South Africa predicted Playing 11 for ICC Cricket World Cup 2019: TSR presents the best Playing 11 for the Proteas side in the 2019 World Cup
South Africa have been a formidable side in International Cricket, in real sense of the term. They are a side which is both feared and respected by the cricketing fraternity.
However, despite being amongst the top 3 cricketing nations in all formats, for nearly a couple of decades, the World Cup- the prized possession of any country and its players, have somehow eluded them over the years. And at times in the most strangest and unluckiest of manners possible.
To mention about them would require would require us to write a completely different article altogether. Let us keep that for another day.
Talking about their recent run of form, the Proteas would head towards the 2019 World Cup on the back of 5 consecutive ODI series wins. These wins have come against Sri Lanka, Pakistan, Australia, and Zimbabwe. Amongst these, series against Australia and Sri Lanka have been won away from home.
Predicted best playing 11 for South Africa in the upcoming World Cup
The following 11 players are in the order as they would appear in the scorecard:
Quinton De Kock
Quinton De Kock has scored 4,602 ODI runs at an impressive average of 45.36 in 106 matches. Talking about his recent form, the wicket-keeper batsman was in sublime touch with the bat having amassed 529 runs in 16 innings for the Mumbai Indians in the IPL. He was the third highest run-getter in the IPL this year.
In South African colours too, he has scored 435 in his last 6 innings at a superb average of 72.5. In short, he has been the best South African batsman off-late.
Averaging over 36 in the last five innings he has played for the Proteas ODI side, Aiden Markram should walk in as the no.2 batsman in the team.
He provided decent starts at the top of the order for them in the recent bi-lateral series against Sri Lanka and Australia. However, he will have to make sure he converts those starts into bigger scores and the relatively batting-friendly English pitches would be nearly perfect for him.
Moreover, Markram has proved to be a success for SA in the Tests, and coupled with the experience that he brings to the table, he should certainly be picked ahead of the other opener in the side- Reeza Hendricks.
There were doubts as to whether this South African legend would be picked in the 15-men Proteas squad, as he has had a string of low scores in the limited overs format foe them. But, considering the big player that he is, there is perhaps nobody else for them to fill in the big shoes that he possesses at no.3.
Amla has been the fastest batsman to 2000, 3000, 4000, and 5000 runs in ODI cricket and has amassed 7,910 runs at an average as high as 49.74. Although, he hasn’t been at his peak, tournaments such as the World Cup bring about the best from players of his stature.
Francois Du Plessis
Captain of the Proteas limited overs side, Du Plessis will have the tough task of winning the first-ever World Cup for South Africa.
— Cricket South Africa (@OfficialCSA) April 18, 2019
He has led SA to 5 consecutive ODI series wins and has had a good run with the bat both in the IPL and in Proteas colours. He has scored 3 half-centuries and 1 century in the last 10 ODI innings and will play an important role batting at no.4.
David Miller will probably be the best man for South Africa in the middle-order. The onus will be on him to accelerate the innings- a quality for which he is known for worldwide. Plus, the experience he brings to the table, he can also provide some stability in case the top-order crumbles. He will be vital for South Africa if they will have to score or chase down runs in excess of 300.
Chris Morris/ JP Duminy
There were quite some few eyebrows when all-rounder Chris Morris was not initially picked in the Proteas squad for the World Cup. But fast bowler Anrich Nortje’s injury came in as a blessing in disguise for Morris as the selectors roped him into the squad.
He has not been in the best of forms for sure, but he can provide South Africa with some good death over bowling and some useful 20-25 runs at the lower-middle order with the bat. He certainly has that potential.
Morris last played in the ODIs in February 2018, and certainly can do wonders for the Proteas provided they give him an opportunity. Since they have picked him eventually, he certainly fits into the team.
JP Duminy, on the other hand can also be considered as a reasonable all-rounder option in Morris’ place, if the selectors do not wish to play two bowling all-rounders simultaneously (the other being Andile Phehlukwayo). Moreover, Duminy can bowl those crucial off-spinners and chip in with some overs if needed by Du Plessis.
But, considering the runs being scored in excess of 300 almost every game, why not strengthen the bowling line-up as it the bowlers who win you matches, especially the bigger ones. My pick would certainly be Morris over Duminy.
If there’s one all-rounder who has been in form for the South Africans in limited overs, it has been Andile Phehlukwayo. He was brilliant form for them with the ball in the last T20I series against Sri Lanka and will look to carry on with the form in the World Cup as well.
Shamsi has been decent enough with the ball in the 4 ODIs hw has played for SA this year. The reason he fits in the team is primarily because of the English conditions. It has been an absolute run-fest in the ongoing ODI series thus far between England and Pakistan with both teams easily scoring in excess of 340. It is the absence of an extra spinner who would be vital in terms of containing runs as well as breaking the important growing partnerships.
Moreover, being a Chinaman, he has an advantage which most bowlers in the world do not.
South Africa’s most experienced campaigner alongside Hashim Amla, Dale Steyn will handle the fast-bowling department along with the lethal Kagiso Rabada. Steyn performance might even guide the Proteas to their maiden World Cup title, as we all know what havoc he can create with the ball in his hand. He even showed some glimpses of his greatness in the couple of matches he played for RCB this IPL.
Imran Tahir is the best bowler in the Proteas arsenal in terms of current form, apart from Kagiso Rabada. Tahir will lead the spin department for them and he will have the most important task at hand. He’ll not only have to pick up the wickets in the middle-overs but will also have to make sure he doesn’t leak runs.
Probably his last World Cup, the 39-year-old would like to carry on his recent IPL performance and gift himself the all-important silverware. To emphasise on the form that he is in at the moment, Tahir was the winner of the Purple Cap in the IPL and became the most successful spinner in the 12-year history of the marquee league.
Another man in form for the Proteas is Kagiso Rabada. With the knack of bowling consistently over the 140 km mark, Rabada will have to perform the way he has so far. He will be crucial if SA hope to grab their maiden World Cup title.
To lay stress on his current form as well, the tall speedster was the second highest wicket-taker in the recently concluded Indian Premier League with 25 wickets in mere 12 matches, at an average of 14.72.