Temba Bavuma has shown improvement from the hamstring strain that he suffered against Afghanistan. But the South African skipper said he is still “not a 100 per cent” fit and that a decision on whether he will play in the second semifinal against Australia at the Eden Gardens in Kolkata will be taken tomorrow.
“I’m quite confident, but I mean, it’s not a unilateral decision that will be made (regarding selection),” Bavuma said during his pre-match press briefing on Wednesday.
Bavuma has also struggled for form throughout this World Cup and has a top score of only 35.
“Yes, I haven’t scored the bulk of the runs within the team. I got in quite a couple of times, but I haven’t converted. I play a key role with Quinton de Kock up top; we’ve been involved in a couple of 50-plus partnerships, so I take a lot of confidence in that,” Bavuma said.
If Bavuma misses the semifinal, Aiden Markram could captain South Africa as he did against England and Bangladesh.
South Africa is bracing for a turner in Kolkata pitch in the World Cup semi-final, and Bavuma did not rule out the possibility of playing two spinners.
“If it is up to me, I’m definitely playing our two frontline spinners. Obviously, Keshav Maharaj and Tabraiz Shamsi. We obviously have Aiden (Markram) as well, who also gives us an option there. Then I think it’s just finalising who the three seamers may be,” Bavuma said.
The Proteas have reached the semifinals on the back of dominant wins over Australia, Sri Lanka, New Zealand, and England. They only lost to the Netherlands and India. But Bavuma tempered the expectations.
“I’d hate to say that we deserve to go through because of the way we played our cricket,” he said. “I don’t think that’s the way things go. But I think from our performances and from the processes that we’ve followed to get to this point, we’ll continue to lean on that, and we believe that that will take care of the result in itself.”
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