Petersen says top order holds key against England
Ex-opener picks De Kock, Miller and Markram for big roles
Former Proteas opening batter Alviro Petersen says the South African top order must fire on all cylinders when they take on England in the must-win ICC T20 World Cup match on Saturday.
The Proteas are up against on-form England, who have won all their four group matches, in what is effectively a shoot-out at the Sharjah Cricket Stadium.
Looking at the clash that will determine if South Africa progress to the semifinal stage, Petersen said the likes of Quinton de Kock, Reeza Hendricks, Rassie van der Dussen, Aiden Markram and David Miller must score big.
“Going into the tournament, you sensed that it was a decent top order,” he said.
“Obviously you would like some of your top order batters going out there to get scores of 80 or even a hundred like Jos Butler did for England on Monday. You need the top order to really fire by getting those 50-plus scores.
“I know that you can’t consistently do that when you look at individual batters but as a team you must at least be able to do it with one or two of the batters.
“It doesn’t have to be one person all the time but at least there must be one batter from the top five or six who goes out there and puts the big runs on board. From a bowling point of view, we are fine, with our pace bowlers bowling quickly and our spinners doing really well.”
Markram is the only South African player to have scored a half century at the tournament for the Proteas with Bavuma, Van der Dussen and Hendricks having had good starts.
The Proteas player yet to set the tournament alight is opening batter De Kock and Petersen says the stage is set for him to step up.
“He (De Kock) is certainly among the key men, he is certainly the best batter in the Proteas side and he needs to come to the party. We know that something happened with him last week but he needs to put that behind him and come to the party and perform.
“The most important thing is that he is there and he has shown in many games and over many years that he is the one player who can take the game away from the opposition.”
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