In the fourth ODI of the 2023 Cricket World Cup, South Africa was comfortable in their cruise control mode with Dasun Shanaka as the opener. Although the skipper went out quickly, the Proteas were well placed at the midway stage.
SA Skipper Temba Bavuma was the first one to get knocked for just 8 runs in the second over. South Africa sought to wrest back control with a flurry of boundaries. However, soon things were tightly placed as Sri Lanka bowled with discipline.
In the ninth over, Sri Lanka skipper Dasun Shanaka was on the bowling end when de Kock opened his arms and hit him for a six. Soon, de Kock and his partner Rassie van der Dussen unleashed a flurry of exquisite strokes and helped the South Africa rate pick up – including a sequence of 6,4,4 from the willow of van der Dussen against Dhananjaya de Silva in the 11th over.
In the 18th over, Van der Dussen reached his half-century with a boundary against Matheesha Pathirana. De Kock reached a half-century of his own in the 22nd over. The duo kept their attack on the spinners, taking 12 runs off de Silva in the 23rd over.
The toss was by Sri Lanka and its skipper had decided to field first. He reasoned the possibility of dew as a factor behind his decision. He also added that the Delhi track was a good one for batting and his team's aim was the restrict South Africa
Sri Lanka’s fast bowling cavalry include Kasun Rajitha, Dilshan Madushanka, and Matheesha Pathirana, while, the spin department comprised of Dhananjaya de Silva, Dunith Wellalage and Charith Asalanka.
On the other hand, South Africa went ahead with four pace bowling options in Marco Jansen, Gerald Coetzee, Kagiso Rabada, and Lungi Ngidi. The spin attack would be led by Keshav Maharaj, with support from part-time offerings from Aiden Markram.
At the time of filing this report, the scorecard stood at South Africa - 196/1 with 29 overs down.