Aiden Markram, a batsman for South Africa, said that despite defeating India on Sunday to put themselves in a strong position to advance to the semifinals of the Twenty20 World Cup, they are not taking anything for granted.
The South Africans won by five wickets on a challenging Perth Stadium pitch, moving them into first place in Group 2 with five points, one ahead of India and Bangladesh with two Super 12 matches remaining.
Only the top two advance, but according to Aiden Markram, South Africa is only concerned with getting better. Zimbabwe (three points), Pakistan (two points), and the Netherlands (zero points) are all still technically in the running.
We Still Got A Massive Game Against Pakistan: Aiden Markram
“If we are top of the log, I suppose it’s a good thing but we’re certainly not thinking with a foot in the door at the moment,” the right-handed batter told reporters at Perth Stadium.
“We’ve still got a massive game against Pakistan and we’ve got Netherlands as well. And we’ve seen the teams that have joined the Super 12 stage can beat any team on their day.
“So there’s still a lot of cricket to be played for us. And it’s pretty much about trying to get better game-by-game. We give ourselves the best chance to qualify if we do.”
South Africa arrived in Australia hoping their pace assault would give them an advantage as they pursue their first restricted overs World Cup victory.
Lungi Ngidi took 4-29 and Wayne Parnell took 3-15 from the fast bowlers in Perth to help limit Virat Kohli and company to 133-9.
Aiden Markram Defends Temba Bavuma
All of the top five in the order, with the exception of captain Temba Bavuma, managed to put up meaningful innings during the first three games, so the batters have also held up their half of the bargain.
The team, according to Aiden Markram, is entirely behind Bavuma as he attempts to break a slump that has seen him score only 14 runs in three innings as the opener.
“I think every player goes through these sort of form slumps and with games are so close to each other it can seem a lot worse than what it is “ said the 28-year-old, who scored a half century against India.
“But I think the whole team management involved have been there for Temba and ideas don’t change about his ability. We all know his ability and the role that he plays not just only with the bat but also from a leadership point of view.
I’ve been through it more than once, unfortunately. It’s always just one knock away, and that’s sort of the message that Temba has been given for the time being,” Markram added.
On Thursday, South Africa plays Pakistan in Sydney, and on Sunday, in Adelaide, it plays the Dutch to complete the Super 12.