Cricket: Over-Aggressiveness Cost SA

South Africa went into the semi-finals against Australia with a very tough task ahead of them. Smith won the toss and elected to bat on what was supposed to be a batting track where as the match progressed, scoring runs would get more difficult (courtesy: Ian Botham’s analysis of the wicket). Unfortunately, SA pretty much lost the match in the first hour. It can be attributed completely to their over-aggressiveness. Smith is known of his aggression and on several occasions, it has served him well. But today was not of one of those days. 

In the third over of the innings he jumped out a couple of steps trying to hit the ball out of the ground! Next, of all people Kallis, an otherwise sedate, level-headed batsmen, exposed all his stumps in an attempt to hit McGrath over the top! (Ponting’s pre-match characterization of Kallis as a “slow-coach” seems to have paid off!). From then on it looked like SA had no plan B whatsoever. Prince, the ideal man for the situation, threw his wicket away to a disgraceful swipe at a virtual wide ball!

In short, pretty much all the batsmen went out and had wild swings! Nothing epitomized this approach more than the insane shot played by the last batsman, Langveldt. With still 5+ overs to go and big-hitter Kemp at the other end, Langveldt tried to hit Watson out of the park when he should have been trying to stick around and give his partner the strike!

The South African team has over the years earned the name “chokers” for losing close games. This time around they strangled themselves and choked right upfront! Its sad to see a team that had the best chance of giving Australia a run for their money, completely fall apart.

Author: Pran Kurup

Pran Kurup is founder and CEO of Vitalect, Inc.

%d bloggers like this: