Tabraiz Shamsi, who is the top-ranked ICC T20I bowler, has passed his fitness test and has been declared fit for South Africa‘s first Super 12 match at the T20 World Cup, which will be against Australia on Saturday afternoon in Abu Dhabi.
Tabraiz Shamsi suffered an injury while playing in the warm-up game versus Pakistan on Wednesday; he left the field after delivering just four balls with what seemed to be a groin injury. Thankfully, he has been given the green light for Saturday’s match, as reported by ESPNcricinfo.
The chinaman will be playing in his first T20 World Cup and will lead South Africa’s spin-bowling department as Imran Tahir was not selected for the mega-event. He snapped up a three-wicket haul in the other warm-up fixture against Afghanistan.
Tabraiz Shamsi has taken 49 wickets for the Proteas in 42 T20Is. However, he has been on another level this year – in 2021, the left-arm wrist-spinner has picked 28 wickets in 17 T20Is at a brilliant economy of 5.54; he’s just four wickets away from taking most T20I wickets in a calendar year.
We won’t be undermining Australia looking at their past results Temba Bavuma
South Africa captain Temba Bavuma, who himself has recovered from a broken thumb, said that the players are a little anxious for their first Super 12 game. However, South Africa and Australia are coming off contrasting results. While the Proteas have won their last three T20I series, Australia have lost their last five series.
Bavuma, though, won’t be taking the Aussies lightly as Aaron Finch’s side is a “competitive” and a “powerful” unit.
“There is a bit of anxiety amongst the guys; a bit of butterflies. That’s something that’s expected. In terms of coming up against Australia, there’s no bigger motivation for the guys. Clashes against Australia have always been full of fire and we don’t expect it to be any different tomorrow. Both teams are under pressure,” Temba Bavuma said.
“What has happened in the past – you have to put it behind. A competitive side, a powerful side like Australia won’t allow those performances to deter them going forward. We won’t be undermining them looking at their past results. We know what type of team they are and it will be important we bring our A game,” he added.
South Africa and Australia have a tough group which includes defending champions West Indies, England, and two Asian teams in Bangladesh and Sri Lanka. The top two teams proceed to the semi-finals.