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Proteas lose toss and bat first, Gerald Coetzee in as SA go with one spinner in Cricket World Cup opener

Gerald Coetzee of South Africa bowls during 2023 Betway ODI International Series match between South Africa and Australia at Supersport Park Stadium in Centuriona

Gerald Coetzee was picked in the Proteas side in their Cricket World Cup opener on Saturday against Sri Lanka in Delhi, as South Africa went with just one spinner. Picture: Samuel Shivambu/BackpagePix

Published Oct 7, 2023


Sri Lanka won the toss and chose to field first against South African in their Cricket World Cup clash in Delhi on Saturday.

South Africa skipper Temba Bavuma said they decided to go with one spinner for the match in Keshav Maharaj, as Tabraiz Shamsi misses out. Gerald Coetzee will be part of the four-man pace attack.

Both sides arrived in India with injury setbacks.

Sri Lanka, the 1996 champions, are missing leg-spinner Wanindu Hasaranga while off-break bowler Maheesh Theekshana is still unfit.

South Africa were stripped of fast bowlers Sisanda Magala and Anrich Nortje.

The Proteas, who have never got beyond the semi-finals of the World Cup, named four fast bowlers in Kagiso Rabada, Lungi Ngidi, Marco Jansen and Coetzee.

The last time they played in New Delhi in 2022, South Africa were bowled out for 99.

Matheesha Pathirana, described by coach Chris Silverwood as possessing the "X Factor" for the World Cup, starts for Sri Lanka with his distinctive slingy style.


South Africa: Temba Bavuma (captain), Quinton de Kock, Rassie van der Dussen, Aiden Markram, Heinrich Klaasen, David Miller, Marco Jansen, Gerald Coetzee, Keshav Maharaj, Kagiso Rabada, Lungi Ngidi.

Sri Lanka: Kusal Perera, Patthum Nissanka, Kusal Mendis, Sadeera Samarawickrama, Charith Asalanka, Dhananjaya de Silva, Dasun Shanaka (captain), Dunith Wellalage, Kasun Rajitha, Dilshan Madushanka, Matheesha Pathirana.

IOL Sport