South Africa are having a nightmare of a white-ball campaign at home against Australia. After being whitewashed in the three T20Is, the home side have gone 0-2 down in the five-match ODI series and another win for Australia will help the visitors bag the series with two games to spare.
In the first ODI, South Africa had a great chance to pick up a win as they had Australian reeling at 113/7 in their pursuit of 223. However, the Australian duo of Marnus Labuschagne and Ashton Agar formed a brilliant partnership to help the tourists register a famous win.
Australia returned to their dominating best in the second ODI as they scored a mammoth 392/8. David Warner and Labuschagne scored centuries while Travis Head and Josh Inglis hit fifties. In reply, four South African batters got out in their 40s and that didn’t help their cause. The Proteas, eventually lost by 123 runs.
The third ODI is going to be played at Senwes Park in Potchefstroom. South Africa will be desperate to return to winning ways. These matches might not have a huge bearing but no team would like to head into a World Cup on the back of a string of losses under their belt.
On the contrary, Australia have made winning a habit and Labuschagne, who wasn’t named in their provisional World Cup squad has given selectors a serious headache with consecutive solid performances. It is important to note that stalwarts like Steve Smith and Glenn Maxwell, and regular captain Pat Cummins are not playing in the team. When these players come into this side, the bench strength is going to be surreal.
South African captain Temba Bavuma, who has been in fine form, will have to inspire his side to muster something special and stop the rampaging Aussies.