Temba Bavuma: Proteas batting didn’t go to plan in T20 World Cup opener
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Abu Dhabi: Proteas captain Temba Bavuma was at a loss for words to explain his team's batting collapse in their T20 World Cup opening defeat to Australia at the Sheikh Zayd Stadium.
Although the Proteas bowlers delivered an impressive performance to push the Aussies to the final two balls of the innings, the batting effort of 118/9 was definitely below standard.
"I can't remember a time where our batting has collapsed like that in the last while, so I'll put it down to that. It's not every day where your top seven, all of them fail, excluding Aiden (Markram)," Bavuma said.
"It was definitely not a par score. We didn't really bat well; barring Aiden who was really the only one who had any score of substance.
"It was not according to plan from a batting point of view. I think anyway, around 150, 160 would have been competitive."
The Proteas don't have much time to rectify their batting mistakes as they have only have two before heading down to Sheikh Zayed Road back to Dubai to face the world champion West Indies.
Furthermore, the challenge to emerge from Group 1 has been intensified with Sri Lanka and Bangladesh being added to the pool after the qualifiers were completed.
"I think from a batting point of view, like I've said, that wasn't according to plan from the batters. So we've got a lot there that we need to improve. 118 is nothing to cry home about," Bavuma added.
"From a bowling - I think the bowlers did quite well to get it up to that point. I think probably from the end, it did get a little bit frantic, so I think maybe that's a talking point for us as a team. Fielding was good barring probably one or two incidents.
"Going into the next game, which I think is on the 26th against the West Indies, we are obviously looking to improve and add a couple of percentages in our batting, bowling, as well as our fielding.
"The inclusion of Sri Lanka, Bangladesh, two sub-continent teams in sub-continent conditions does make the group a lot tougher," Bavuma said.
"The group was never an easy one, but I think we know that he ever game, we are going to have to come with our best cricket. I mean, with Sri Lanka and Bangladesh coming in, we'll be preparing as best as we can. Our next assignment now is the West Indies and our focus will be there."