West Indies come up against South Africa in both sides third match of this year’s World T20 Super 10's stage in Group 1 as South Africa look to keep their place in the competition as they know a defeat will see them eliminated from the competition. The match takes place in Nagpur on Friday afternoon at 14.00 PM UK time.
It's West Indies who head into the match as favourites after beating England and Sri Lanka with relative ease to take to the top of the group at the half way stage. The South African's somehow lost to England in their opening game despite, scoring 229 from their 20 overs only for England to chase it down with two deliveries remaining. They then collected a vital victory over minnows Afghanistan collecting the victory by 37 runs to keep their hopes alive of remaining in the competition. So this proves that it is a vital game for both sides as if West Indies win then they will be the second team to make their way through to the semi-finals to join New Zealand. As for South Africa this match is absolutely crucial if they are to progress through as a defeat would see them out as Sri Lanka face England on Saturday meaning that the South African's would be all but out.
These teams last met in this format in January of last year in Durban and it was South Africa who ran out easy winners in the end winning by a final margin of 69 runs. South Africa batted first in the match and made a massive score of 195-3 from their 20 overs, largely down to Morne van Wyk who made 114 not out. In reply, West Indies were bowled out for 126 in a game that they would have been disappointed in and they would have expected to of put up more of a fight than they did. Since this match it's the West Indies who have become a real force in T20 cricket and having found a number of players who suit the way that like to play and they have gone all the way up to number two in the T20 world rankings.
Chris Gayle - Gayle is without a shadow of a doubt the most important West Indies player currently in their ranks and he began this competition with an unbeaten century against England to take his side to victory before, not being able to bat in the win over Sri Lanka as he had an injury. On his day Gayle can dismantle any bowling attack and can take a game away from anyone and is one of the most destructive players in the world and is a player which every teams wants in their side as he adds an extra level of fear onto the opposition. If the West Indies are to go as far as many people are expecting them to go then Gayle will need to stay at the level which he showed in the opening game against England.
AB de Villiers - De Villiers is most definitely the most important element to this South Africa side and with the bat he is such an exciting prospect to watch and although he doesn't bring the power the Gayle does he has the sheer elegance and calmness which is what makes him such a successful player. The opener showed in the previous match against Afghanistan that on his day he can really get on top of any bowling line-up as he scored a blistering 64 from just 29 balls as he helped his side set 209 from their 20 overs. De Villiers is one of the most experienced players in this line-up and although South Africa are a great side De Villiers is really key to them having success as he comes in at number three.
West Indies are still sweating over the fitness of explosive opener Gayle who couldn't bat in the win over Sri Lanka, but it is expected that he will be back in time for the match. If Gayle were to miss out then it would likely to be Lendl Simmons who would replace the opener at the top of the order. Other than Gayle there is no other news on injuries to other players in their ranks and so long as Gayle is fit they should remain unchanged.
Possible team: Johnson Charles,Chris Gayle,Marlon Samuels,Andre Fletcher,Dwayne Bravo,Andre Russell,Denesh Ramdin(wk),Darren Sammy(c),Carlos Brathwaite,Samuel Badree,Sulieman Benn
The overall balance of the South African side right now is looking much better than it was just a couple of weeks ago and you would expect them to still remain without Dale Steyn who has had a difficult few months with injuries. They may opt to make a change to their batting order as they could bring in Rilee Rossouw for someone in the middle order. After winning their last match you would say that they wouldn't want to change a winning formula which is hard to not agree with.
Possible team: Quinton de Kock(wk,)Hashim Amla,Faf du Plessis(c),AB de Villiers,JP Duminy,David Miller,Chris Morris,Kyle Abbott,David Wiese,Kagiso Rabada,Imran Tahir