Australia vs South Africa 1st T20: Rossouw’s blitz too much for Australia to handle

Rossouw was named Man of the Match for his sparkling innings of 75

Rossouw was named Man of the Match for his sparkling innings of 75

Image courtesy of: ESPNcricinfo

South Africa opening batsman Rilee Rossouw impressed on debut as he smashed a spectacular 75 to lead his team to a convincing seven-wicket win over Australia in the first Twenty20 International in Adelaide.

Rossouw was well supported by wicketkeeper-batsman Quinton de Kock, who scored 46.

However, Australia all-rounder Shane Watson and left-arm pace bowler James Faulkner both deserve some credit as they made 47 and 41 respectively.

Australia captain Aaron Finch would have been pondering over his decision to bat first after he himself was caught by Rossouw at short cover off the bowling of Ryan McLaren for 14 runs.

Cameron White managed to make 24 runs before he was brilliantly caught by Farhaan Behardien at point off the bowling of Wayne Parnell.

Debutant Ben Dunk only made two runs before he was caught by South Africa skipper Jean Paul (JP) Duminy at short cover off the bowling of Imran Tahir.

Debutant Nathan Reardon fared no better as he was the victim of a sensational catch by de Kock off the bowling of Kyle Abbott for four runs.

Watson and Faulkner stabilised the innings with a 57-run partnership before he was caught by Duminy at cover off the bowling of Abbott.

Watson’s brilliant knock of 47 came off 36 balls and included three sixes.

Watson scored 47 in his international comeback

Watson scored 47 in his international comeback

Image courtesy of: ESPNcricinfo

Ben Cutting mustered six runs before he was caught by David Miller at long-on off the bowling of Abbott.

Thanks to Faulkner’s career-best knock of 41, which came off 33 balls and included one boundary and a six, Australia finished on 144/6 off their 20 overs.

Abbott was the pick of the bowlers with three wickets, while Tahir, Parnell and McLaren chipped in with one wicket apiece.

Chasing 145 to win, South Africa got off to a horrible start as debutant Reeza Hendricks was caught behind off the third ball of the innings, which was bowled by Doug Bollinger.

Rossouw and de Kock made up for the early loss of Hendricks with a 129-run partnership, during which Rossouw brought up his half-century, before he was caught by Cutting at mid-on off the bowling of Pat Cummins.

Rossouw’s superb knock of 78 came off 50 balls and included seven boundaries and three sixes.

De Kock went on to score 46 off 39 deliveries, which included four boundaries and six, before he was caught by White at short cover off the bowling of Cameron Boyce.

De Kock struck four boundaries and a six during his knock of 46

De Kock struck four boundaries and a six during his knock of 46

Image courtesy of: ESPNcricinfo

Duminy and Miller mopped with the rest of the runs with no problems whatsoever to hand South Africa a comfortable seven-wicket win.

Boyce, Cummins and Bollinger claimed one wicket each.

Finch was disappointed with his side’s performance, and said: “We were disappointing with the bat. A beautiful wicket as you could see. A lot of starts, but no one went on. Myself and Cam got off to a good start but I threw it away with a poor shot. Towards the end of the innings, that [South Africa’s bowling] was as good as I’ve seen in a long time.”

Duminy was pleased to have taken a 1-0 lead in the series, and said: “Nice to see the youngsters come through. The positivity they played with was great to watch. I thought the execution was unbelievable today, we stuck to our plans and dug in their yorkers pretty well. It’s going to be good to get back to the MCG, it’s been about 5-6 years since I last played there.”

Rossouw was named Man of the Match, and said: “My first couple of games for South Africa weren’t great. I stuck there, kept my confidence up, and tonight was my night. I just want to shine during every opportunity I get.”

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