The Twenty/20 World Cup has already had plenty of tension, unless you’re an England fan, and has spawned a couple of great matches. Pakistan’s victory over Australia was one and last night’s victory for India over South Africa was the other. The Proteas defeat means their world cup is over and if there is one team deserving of exit for being arrogant and complacent, it is South Africa. Actually, England run them a close second although our exit was more down to stupidity and carelessness than arrogance.
Sport is a wonderful and cruel thing. When South Africa restricted (if that is the right word) India to 153, they clearly assumed that ambling out and batting would do the job. However, the Indian bowling attack was, barring Sreesanth, quite superb. RP Singh and my favourite angry off-spinner, Harbajhan Singh bowled beautifully. Even without the injured Dhoni behind the stumps, two wafting SA batters were stumped. And the fielding backed them up too, not often you can say that about India. On the SA bench, the dawning realisation that they were first, under prssure and later, about to go out, was a joy to watch. That’s where square-jawed, gum chewing, chippy chat gets you, Graham Smith. Absolutely nowhere.
So, I snigger at the host’s exit while very much looking forward to two excellent semi finals… Pakistan, India, Australia, New Zealand. Impossible to choose a winner and that is the great thing about 20/20. Played hard and focused (England take note) 20/20 matches can go either way and it is a game in which a single over can turn a match. Great entertainment.