Proteas on guard for tricky Bangladesh
SA to face Tigers in World Cup clash on Tuesday after beating defending champions England
Whether setting or chasing a target, Proteas batsman Aiden Markram says the team will need to maintain the intensity if they are to overcome a tricky Bangladesh side in their ICC Cricket World Cup clash at the Wankhede Stadium, Mumbai on Tuesday.
SA will have their tails up after a convincing thrashing of defending champions England by 229 runs on Saturday.
Markram, who stood in for regular captain Temba Bavuma who was withdrawn from the side that faced England due to illness, knows their subcontinent opponents will be a tough nut to crack and says they will not be taking them lightly.
The Proteas have only batted second once in the competition, a match they lost to the Netherlands, and Markram said they were relishing a chance to remedy their faults if presented with a chance to bat second again.
“When we are chasing in the game, it’s important to apply yourself as a batter and to get yourself in, doing it the same way as you would if you were setting a target,” Markram said.
“Once you’re feeling in, you must then try to understand the situation and what’s required of you.
“We have batted first a lot and we haven’t chased much, so it’ll be a great challenge if we do get to chase tomorrow and try to implement what we’ve been chatting about” Markam said in his prematch media conference.
Bangladesh have not had it all their own way, losing three of their four matches.
Asked if it was the perfect time to play them, Markram said: “I don’t think you can ever say it’s the perfect time to play anyone.
“We’ve all seen in this World Cup now that any team can beat anyone on a given day and if you don’t respect that fact, the game of cricket can really hurt you.
“So, tomorrow is an opportunity for us to take a bit of confidence that we took from England, and ultimately try to replicate it.
“That’s the challenge and that’s what we’re striving towards, if we bring the right attitude and intensity, we give ourselves a good chance,” he said.
History shows that the Tigers have had the rub of the green over the Proteas in recent years, claiming three victories from their past four matches dating back to a 21-run victory over SA in the 2019 edition of the 50-over tournament.
That also included a stunning 2-1 ODI series victory for Bangladesh when they were on tour in SA in March 2022.
“They’re a fantastic team. If you don’t rock up on the day and if your skills let you down on the day against a team like Bangladesh, you will be put under a lot of pressure.”
Asked about the availability of Bavuma, Markram said the skipper looked in good spirits and a final decision on his inclusion will be made on Tuesday.
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