‘This is a World Cup’: Farcical scenes as players go down, rain robs South Africa of crucial win

Home » ‘This is a World Cup’: Farcical scenes as players go down, rain robs South Africa of crucial win
‘This is a World Cup’: Farcical scenes as players go down, rain robs South Africa of crucial win

South Africa’s World Cup hopes have taken a hit, with their Group 2 fixture against Zimbabawe being abandoned in Hobart.

After play was delayed by a couple of hours, Zimbabwe managed to reach 5-79 from their rain-reduced nine overs.

In one over however the game was as good as wrapped up, as Quinton de Kock belted 23 from the opening over of their chase — that was, of course, until the rain came down once again.

Nor did he slow down either, smashing another four boundaries in the second over to see the Proteas reach 0-39 off their opening two overs.

But with every passing delivery the rain got harder and conditions became increasingly dangerous.

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Zimbabwe’s Richard Ngarava slips over and got injured at Bellerive Oval in Hobart on October 24, 2022. Photo: AFPSource: AFP

Fast bowler Richard Ngarava slipped over at the end of his second over and was assisted from the field.

One over later and wicket-keeper Regis Chakabva slipped over as he prepared to take a ball down the leg side, which led to captain Craig Ervine complaining to the umpires about the conditions.

Eventually umpires Michael Gough and Ahsan Raza agreed, calling for the covers as rain continued to fall heavily.

It left South Africa agonisingly close to securing a win, with the South Africans 0-51 off just three overs.

But needing at least five overs bowled to constitute a game, the rain beat their rapid start to their run chase with de Kock (47 off 18) on fire and Temba Bavuma two not out.

“At the end of the day it was the weather that won,” former South African captain Shaun Pollock said.

South Africa’s Quinton de Kock chats with Zimbabwe’s Regis Chakabva (R) as they walk off the field due to rain. Photo: AFPSource: AFP

Former England captain Nasser Hussain said the result was a big one in the context of the tournament, with Pakistan, who suffered a heartbreaking final ball loss to India on Sunday night, benefiting from the no result — which sees South Africa and Zimbabwe both earn one point.

“A big result in the group,” Hussain said.

“I think Pakistan will be pretty pleased with the rain coming down here having lost last night they wouldn’t have wanted one of these sides to get two points.

“Shockwaves sent through the group.

Pollock, however, said the “correct decision that was made.”

“You can understand the disappointment from a South African perspective, they basically had it done and dusted,” he said.

“Zimbabwe, you can understand that they don’t want their players injured – there’s still four games to go.”

Earlier, Zimbabwe slumped to 4-19 before a 50-run stand between Wessly Madhevere (35 not out of 18) and Milton Shumba (18 off 20) gave their nation something to defend.

Lungi Ngidi took 2-20 while Wayne Parnell finished with 1-6 off his two overs.

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