South Africa vs Afghanistan LIVE SCORE, ICC Cricket World Cup 2019 Match Updates: South Africa beat Afghanistan by nine wickets! It's over. South Africa get their first win of the World Cup 2019. Proteas cross the finishing line with a six from Phehlukwayo.
When this edition of ICC Cricket World Cup started a fortnight back, not many would have imagined South Africa languishing at ninth place in the ten-team event, neither would many have foreseen a strangely spirit-less performance from Afghanistan. But such has been the quality of cricket by both teams that they find themselves occupying the bottom two places on the points table.
Strangely, both teams are also dealing with varying degrees of internal troubles. Mohammad Shahzad was unceremoniously sent home on fitness grounds, only for him to rebut the reasons later. For South Africa, AB de Villiers was known to have expressed an interest to return to the ODI fold, only for CSA to reply in negative.
Rassie van der Dussen, the man who replaced AB de Villiers in South Africa's World Cup squad, is not surprised that the legend wanted to come out of retirement for the ongoing big event but feels the swashbuckler should have handled things better.
Middle-order batsman der Dussen has appeared in 13 ODIs since making his debut in January this year.
The selectors saw him as a replacement for de Villiers, who retired in May last year but expressed a desire to come back on the eve of South Africa's World Cup squad announcement in April.
That request was turned down by Cricket South Africa, which had "pleaded" with him to not retire last year but didn't get the desired response at that time.
"It's not necessarily the best question to ask to me because I am involved in it but had he not retired it definitely would have influenced me directly," der Dussen was quoted as saying by 'ESPNCricinfo'.
"But you can't, on the day before the announcement and a team that's been working for something for year and even longer than a year, come and say, 'I want to make a comeback now'."
South Africa Players: Faf du Plessis (capt), Quinton de Kock, Imran Tahir, David Miller, JP Duminy, Lungi Ngidi, Kagiso Rabada, Aiden Markram, Chris Morris, Andile Phehlukwayo, Tabraiz Shamsi, Dale Steyn, Dwaine Pretprius, Rassie van der Dussen, Hashim Amla.
Afghanistan Team Players: Mohammad Shahzad (wk), Hazratullah Zazai, Rahmat Shah, Hashmatullah Shahidi, Asghar Afghan, Mohammad Nabi, Najibullah Zadran, Gulbadin Naib(c), Rashid Khan, Dawlat Zadran, Mujeeb Ur Rahman, Noor Ali Zadran, Samiullah Shenwari, Aftab Alam, Hamid Hassan.
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With Agency inputs