Friday, February 5, 2016

Fantastico Battles that could Impact the 2nd ODI between Eng and SA

South Africa and England will go head to head again at Port Elizabeth tomorrow in the second ODI match of the five match series. They will be keen to stage a quick turnaround in this series as a loss in the second match would mean that they would need to win all of the last three games to take the series. After rain spoiled the first match just as it was shaping towards a close finish, the second will once again provide a lot of sub-battles which will decide the course of the match.

4 Fantastico Battles to look out for in the 2nd ODI:

Alex Hales and Jason Roy Vs Kasigo Rabada and Kyle Abbot

Alex Hales and Jason Roy were the catalysts who provided the early thrust and the platform for the likes of Jos Buttler and Ben Stokes to have a crack at the South African bowlers after they had helped England race to 70 off only 8 overs. Chris Morris and Merchant de Lange were the opening bowlers who suffered gravely at the hands of these two and I feel that the South African think tank might opt for the in-form Kasigo Rabada and Kyle Abbot in their place. Hitting Rabada and Abbot might not prove to be so easy for the English openers and it will be a fascinating duel to watch.

Jos Buttler and Ben Stokes Vs Morne Morkel and Imran Tahir

It was Buttler whose enterprising ton put England on the way of a huge total and it was Ben Stokes whose 57 off only 38 balls ultimately got them there. In the absence of Dale Steyn, Morne Morkel is the most experienced of the Protea bowlers and along with Imran Tahir the most capable of halting a rampaging Buttler and Stokes. Both of these men traveled at over 7 runs an over and will need to step up on it if South Africa have any intention of levelling the series.

Hashim Amla and Quinton de Kock Vs David Willey and Reece Topley

Hashim Amla and Quinton de Kock had been exceptional in the last test of the for test series that preceded the ODI matches and while Amla fell cheaply to Willey, de Kock was brutal and played a peppy knock off 138* off just 96 balls which almost powered the South Africans to a famous win. Amla will need to be at his serene best and combine with de Kock to lay the platform from which the likes of de Villiers, du Plessis, Duminy and Rossouw can prosper.

Ab de Villiers Vs Adil Rashid and Moeen Ali

De Villiers came in to the last match after making three consecutive ducks and he was just hitting his straps when, in an attempt to get South Africa closer to the D/L score, he was caught by Stokes off Ali at the boundary. De Villiers will be itching to get a good score under his belt and the law of the averages suggests that he might be in for a big one here. He's a brilliant player of spin bowling and getting out to a part timer might just be the extra motivation he needs to get his old touch back. His battle with Rashid and Ali in the middle overs will be riveting to watch.

This blog post is inspired by the blogging marathon hosted on IndiBlogger for the launch of the #Fantastico Zica from Tata Motors. You can apply for a test drive of the hatchback Zica today.

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