It was frustrating to see the to be number one team in world fails to chase a mean total of 250, when it can boast of having been the record holder of the highest run chase. Now, one can draw the conclusion that South Africa can come out with surprises only when the stars favour them. They can upset a great nation only when the latter has reduced itself in its standards yet again. If not, how come the team fails to tackle the Australian bowling which did not consist experienced lads like Brett Lee, Shaun Tait and Shane Watson? This can very tell us the tale of a South African team which can make hay only when the sun shines. Not otherwise.
Even though they won the first encounter against Australia at Hobart, the South Africa were really gasping for breath in an attempt to chase 271. On the other hand, a total of 271 from a team that were under pressure to perform and for a team that never had or hardly had any frontline batsmen to face the myth of Dale Steyn and Morkel, with the presence of an all rounder in Jaques Kallis was something unexpected from the South Africa. And a close look at the way the Proteas chased down the target would give us a clear picture of where the Proteas stand as far as the number one team is considered. The South African team had to wait for the number 8 batsman in Albie Morkel to end victorious.
This was not all. A newcomer in Shaun Marsh comes out with a brilliant knock of 79 off 103 balls, where he is sent in to face the new ball. Despite a good start, South Africa ends up on the losing side. Is this the professional cricket what South Africa is supposed to play? The South African innings saw a 135 run second wicket partnership between Gibbs and Kallis. Out of this 135 run partnership, Kallis has his own score of 72 and Herscelle Gibbs facing just 37 balls. South Africa just couldn't convert the"close to the target" situation to a victory. This is the problem that the to be number one team is found to face.
South Africa had wickets in hand and so did they have the habit to choke, which they have been doing since they entered ino the international arena. This time also the South Africa were too generous in giving lives to the top rungetters in the match namely Ricky Ponting and Shaun Marsh. The funda of taking the third powerplay by the South Africans in the 45th over was just not acceptable. Just because things went alright for South Africa in the first one dayer at Hobart (where the South Africans took the third power play in the 45th over) how could one think that it would be the same at Melbourne too? Such stupid decisions can ensure a team to be on the top, probably, Bangladesh would have made it to the number one spot whetever.