South Africa wary of Twenty20 ambush

South Africa were reminded of a painful home ambush four years ago as they prepared to open the inaugural Twenty20 world championships against the West Indies today.

South Africa were reminded of a painful home ambush four years ago as they prepared to open the inaugural Twenty20 world championships against the West Indies today.

Graeme Smith's home team is a front-runner along with the world Test and one-day champions Australia to win the 12-nation competition in the shortest version of the game.

But the South Africans will be wary of the West Indies who stunned them in the opening match of the 2003 World Cup in Cape Town, a defeat that cost the hosts a place in the second round.

West Indian star Marlon Samuels did not hesitate to remind the South Africans of that day and hoped his team will pull off a similar win at the Wanderers today.

"Hope we can do something like that again," said Samuels.

"They [South Africa] are at home and have the advantage, but we are playing very good Twenty20 cricket."

South Africa, who have not won the 50-over World Cup in five attempts despite being a formidable side, are determined to bag the Twenty20 world title in front of their own fans. Smith's men showed they mean business when they stunned Australia by eight wickets in a practice match on Sunday, a win that key batsman Abraham de Villiers said was a real morale boost.

"Victory is always important, especially against Australia because they're a well-drilled side," said de Villiers, who smashed 65 off 35 balls as South Africa chased down a target of 180 with five deliveries to spare. - Sapa-AFP

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