Melbourne – On the face of it cricket is a relatively simple game.
One team bats, another bowls and at the end of it the team who scores the most runs and takes the most wickets will win.
Given that the ICC Cricket World Cup has now been going for over a month people should be well-versed with how the game works and the finer details
For those following the exploits of the Proteas the dream is very much alive as they booked their berth in Tuesday’s semifinal where they will play the winner of today’s encounter between New Zealand and West Indies.
The game against Sri Lanka earlier this week highlighted South Africa’s ability to go for the jugular as they decimated the opposition batting lineup which fits right into the plan for any side looking to win the 2015 edition according to former Australian wicketkeeper-batsman Adam Gilchrist.
“Anybody who knows cricket knows that the best way to stop someone from scoring is to get them out. Take a wicket. With all the big runs scored so far there’s no surprise that NZ, India and SA – sides that have taken wickets – are right up there,” Gilchrist said when addressing media at a function at tournament partner SAP’s offices here this week.
“The team that will win this World Cup will be the one with the most well-equipped bowling lineup. Not the one with the power-packed batting, the bowling lineup that can take wickets and crucially in the last 10 overs which is where the teams are mounting these big 400-plus starts,” he added.
With that kind of logic the Proteas could well be on their way having cleaned up five opposition batting lineups in their seven games played to date.
So far Imran Tahir has been South Africa’s most successful option having taken 15 wickets while Morne Morkel has been the pick of the quicks with his 14 scalps and both feature in the top 10 list of wicket-takers at the tournament.
“The team that is going to win this Cup is based around their bowling attacking more than batting. It doesn’t need you can have blockers out there, you need the flamboyance with the bat.
“We saw seven wicket fall to spinners. Maybe that’s the little asterisk, Gilchrist said of South Africa’s performance in the quarterfinal that saw JP Duminy claim a hat trick.
Gilchrist was also offered his opinion on who he felt is likely to end up as the tournament’s top batsman and his summation was brief as he explained the talent that is AB de Villiers.
“As far as the all-round package. I think he’s the most valuable cricketer in the world at the moment.
And what has the World Cup winning batsman made of the high totals that cricket fans have been treated to?
“There have been high-scoring rates for a number of reasons but certainly the batsmen have had a good time in this tournament.”