NZ didn’t capitalise on SA’s leaked plan
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Pretoria - According to New Zealand captain Kane Williamson, his side did not miss a trick by failing to utilise the leaked bowling strategy of Proteas bowler Dale Steyn, in the first One Day International (ODI) at SuperSport Park, in Centurion, on Wednesday.
South Africa ran out victors by 20 runs after posting 304/7 in their 50 overs, as New Zealand were bowled out for 284 in their reply with 11 balls remaining. Steyn returned figures of 2/50 on the night.
Earlier in the day, news broke that a hotel guest where the Proteas were staying in Melrose Arch was mistakenly handed the strategies for Steyn, printed on a piece of paper that was pushed under her door, and took to social media to post a photo of the document which quickly went viral.
Williamson did not confirm or deny if he had indeed seen the document, but said it had little effect on the outcome of the contest.
“We didn’t make too much about it,” said Williamson.
“It’s always in the moment when you’re out there, and that’s the challenge when you bat. Everyone has got plans, often the good area to a batsman is similar if the ball is doing a little bit and brings in most modes of dismissal. It would’ve been nice if we could’ve used it to our advantage, but it didn’t work out that way.”
Facing the Proteas’ bowling attack led by Steyn was always a daunting task, even if they did know which area the quick would probe, said Williamson.
“I think it’s (the strategy) largely insignificant to be honest. I don’t even know if it’s accurate, they’ve got a world-class bowling attack. From our perspective we’re working on our games to cope with that, they adapt and change their plans all the time. It’s certainly what we try and do and what every side does. What you see on paper, doesn’t end up always being the final plan.”
With the hosts posting 304/7, with Hashim Amla leading the way with his 21st ODI century, New Zealand had their work cut out with the bat.
“300 is never easy to chase, but the guys stuck at it,” said Williamson.
“It’s a fine line in white-ball cricket. If we can do the little things a little bit better, then it goes a long way. Hashim’s and Rilee’s (Rossouw) knocks were superb.”
On the dry outfield, Kiwi Martin Guptil injured his wrist diving for a ball while fielding and was not expected to bat in the Kiwi reply. The fiery batsman, however, still came out to bat at number four and made a fighting 25 before he was dismissed.
Williamson said Guptil would be assessed later on Wednesday night to examine the damage.