South Africa coach Mark Boucher has shared that the Netherlands were the better team after their rather forgettable defeat in Adelaide on Sunday. He also stated that the Proteas fancied their chances of a win but felt clueless about what went wrong in the match as well.
However, it was their first loss to the Netherlands team across formats as they failed to chase a target of 159. Rilee Rossouw, who shone with a hundred against Bangladesh earlier in the World Cup, top-scored with 25 as South Africa fell 13 runs short to reach the target as well as the semi-final.
And, Boucher said that South Africa were never in the game and he also gave the credit to the opposition for playing bravely and handling pressure well.
As quoted by Iol.co.za, Mark Boucher said: “We were never really in this game, to be fair. Like if you look at it, and go from the start of the game on paper, we should have won the game. But the game is not played on paper.”
He continued: “It’s played out in the middle. They batted well. They were brave. They can come out and play brave cricket. We then put ourselves under pressure with the bat. They read the conditions really well, and adapted quicker than we did, and they made it really tough for us. I think the more you don’t do well at World Cups, it tends to play in your head a little bit.”
However, South Africa’s loss became Pakistan’s gain, as they booked their place in the semi-final by beating Bangladesh later in the day as well. The coach has also said that South Africa lacked intensity and the Netherlands executed their plans quite well.
Mark Boucher said: “When you look at the way we started the game our energies were low. I haven’t put my finger on it, haven’t had a chance to speak to guys yet, where they feel it went wrong. Our plans were there, we didn’t quite use them well enough. If you look at the game as a whole, they outbowled us, they bowled to the longer side of the field. They were able to create more pressure than we were on them.”
“The guys were in a good space. I think we played some good cricket over a long period of time, we slipped up the other night against Pakistan, and we looked flat today. I don’t think we overtrained. The energies didn’t seem like it was there today, and we didn’t bowl or bat like we should have,” Mark Boucher signed off.
Pakistan, who beat Bangladesh by five wickets, will now take on New Zealand in the semifinals if India beat Zimbabwe. Otherwise, they will play against England, while India will face New Zealand for a place in the final as well.