There is no such thing as a dead-rubber against Australia. That’s according to out-going Proteas legend Imran Tahir ahead of his final ODI for South Africa here at Old Trafford.
The Proteas may be in the departure lounge at this World Cup, and Australia assured of their semi-final place already, but much like when the All Blacks and the Springboks clash at the end of the Rugby Championship, this final round-robin World Cup clash holds gravitas.
The fact that disgraced Australian duo Steve Smith and David Warner will be facing the Proteas since serving their bans for cheating will add even further spice to occasion.
“When we play against Australia it is always an extra boost because obviously they are known to play good cricket. They obviously give you a good fight, and that boosts everyone. We all want to do well against Australia,” Tahir, who is retiring from the 50-overs format, said.
“Previous records show that we are the team that beat Australia most – more than any other team in Australia. When you know you playing against top opposition, you have to come up with your “A-game”, otherwise you are going to be on the losing side. It is always exciting playing against them.”