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Rediff.com  » Sports » Super Eights: In-form South Africa will look to crush confident England

Super Eights: In-form South Africa will look to crush confident England

May 07, 2010 14:27 IST

It will be a battle of equals when a confident England locks horns with title favourites South Africa in a Group E Super Eight match of the Twenty20 cricket World Cup at the Kensington Oval in Bridgetown, Barbados on Saturday.

While England defeated Pakistan by six wickets in their first match of the Super Eight stage on Thursday, South Africa also produced a clinical performance to get the better of New Zealand by 13 runs in the other match of the day.

With each of them having two points in the kitty, both the Englishmen and Proteas will be aiming to continue with the winning momentum and inch closer towards a semi-final berth.

Neither batting nor bowling is a worry for England, which rode on Kevin Pietersen's sizzling unbeaten 70 to defeat Pakistan and the team will expect another crackling performance from the experienced cricketer.

England have an dependable opening pair in Michael Lumb and Craig Kieswetter, who can give a solid foundation while batsmen like captain Paul Collingwood and Eoin Morgan can support Pietersen in the middle order.

Their bowling has been equally impressive so far in the tournament.

Ryan Sidebottom has done well to worry batsmen with his impeccable line and length, while Tim Bresnan and Stuart Broad have the ability of producing some timely breakthroughs in the middle overs.

On the other hand, consistency is the main strength of the South African batting department, which includes star all-rounder Jacques Kallis and the experienced Herschelle Gibbs.

Their batting has powerful hitters in captain and opener Graeme Smith, AB de Villiers, including  Albie Morkel and Mark Boucher who can pull the team out of the pits, in case of any early slip-up.

Their bowling line-up also looks top notch and ready to give the English batsmen a tough time.

Charl Langeveldt has proved his mettle with the new ball on several occasions and he will get support from speedster Dale Steyn and medium pacer Andre Botha.

Smith also has a bowling option in Kallis, who can provide the required breakthroughs with his wide experience.

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