Thursday, 16 February 2012

Predictions for South Africa series

The Zimbabwe cricket team has left after an underwhelming tour, and their replacements, the South Africans, have played their warmup match against Canterbury. This tour will hopefully be the best seen in New Zealand for some time, with the likes of Dale Steyn, Hashim Amla and AB de Villiers going up against the Black Caps. For those fans on elder statesman watch, this might well also be the last chance to see Jacques Kallis in action, though action may be the wrong word if he grinds out a grim century. 

So, how will the results fall? I think I know, and have some predictions. 

T20s: NZ to win 2-1. The Kiwis are almost top dogs in T20 cricket, being 2nd on the ICC rankings.  They should edge these games out I think, South Africa have never been as good at the shorter formats as they should be. (chokers, apparently) Provided that New Zealand create the right pitches for their team, i.e extremely slow and taking a bit of turn, the arsenal of Kiwi spinners should be able to strangle South Africa. Look for starring roles from Nathan McCullum and Williamson.

ODIs: SA to win 2-1. Yes, we beat them at the World Cup, but let's face it, the longer a match goes, the better chance South Africa have. Amla in particular will be a huge wicket to take, if he can bat 30 overs at the top then a huge platform will be set, plus Steyn will be in the team for these games. I think New Zealand will let themselves down in these games as well, I predict there will be at least one abysmal batting collapse.

Tests: SA to win 2-0. There is a lot of self belief in the Black Cap test team at the moment, and they are about to get a serious reality check. South Africa are a fantastic test side, their quick bowlers have a lot of stamina and their batsmen put a high price on their wickets. They will simply overwhelm the Black Caps, especially I reckon the younger ones, such as Williamson and Bracewell, will crumble under the pressure. Why only 2-0 then? It will be autumn in New Zealand, you have to allow for one game to get rained off.

Anyone else care to make a prediction?

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