Former South African pacer Dale Steyn talked about the loss his side faced in the semi-final of the ICC World Cup 2015 against New Zealand. He said that he was confident of defending any target in the last over even if it was 3 runs.
Dale Steyn was at his absolute best during the ICC World Cup 2015. He was one of the main reasons why his side reached the semi-final of the tournament. However, he along with the entire team suffered heartbreak as they lost to New Zealand in the semi-final by the barest of margins.
South Africa posted a decent total of 297 runs in a rain-curtailed 43-over. They bowled pretty well but Grant Elliot took the game away from them as he batted superbly. Dale Steyn was given the responsibility to defend the target in the last but the batter smashed six off the penultimate ball to win the game for his team.
South Africa suffered a disappointing loss by four wickets. As Dale Steyn was hit for a six, the Proteas players were down and broken. Almost every player broke into tears and they were left shattered.
Dale Steyn recalled about the game, saying that he was confident of defending the target and when he was hit for six, he failed to achieve the goal. Speaking to ESPNCricinfo, he explained:
“I remember being down at third man, Morne Morkel was bowling the second last over and Grant Elliot was on strike. I was right with the South Africans, Russel Domingo was there, Garry Kristen was there and I was watching the big screen to see how much I had to defend in the last over. It really didn’t matter what it was, I said to them I’ve got it.
“I was confident of defending any target in the final of the 2015 semi-final even if it was three runs. Then the over happened and unfolded as it did. And that was when it hit me like I failed to defend, that was my goal.”
AUS vs SA: I just thought i failed that task right there – Dale Steyn
Dale Steyn added that after he was hit for six, he realized he failed the task which was given to him. He added that he shifted his focus and lifted the other players up as well in the dressing room. He elaborated:
“I wasn’t there thinking about how we lost in previous World Cups, I just thought i failed that task right there. Then I immediately thought what is my new task. I took a moment on the field, Grant picked me up and I thought the best thing to do was put a smile on the face and be the professional that you’ve to be.
“Then as soon as I got into the dressing room, next professional job was to pick everybody else. I knew I was going to play a role in future World Cups and tell them Sun will come tomorrow and don’t worry about it. It was like dad-mode kicked in me. I wasn’t thinking of past South African failures.”
South Africa have again qualified for the semi-final of the World Cup in the ongoing edition. They will take on Australia on 16th November at the Eden Gardens in Kolkata.
#Confident #Defending #Runs #SemiFinal