Heinrich Klaasen expressed that it was “pure emotion” that took over when he appeared to roar in the face of England fast bowler Mark Wood upon completing a remarkable World Cup century on Saturday.
The Proteas batsman, battling cramps and enduring a day of oppressive heat and humidity, managed to achieve a century in just 61 balls, including a six and a four off consecutive deliveries from Wood. His celebration involved an emphatic roar directed right at Wood, who remained composed and chose not to respond with similar aggression.
“I didn’t say anything to him,” Klaasen told reporters after a century that played a pivotal role in South Africa’s total of 399-7, ultimately leading to a convincing 229-run victory over defending champions England.
“I did go and apologize immediately and after the game. He [Wood] did hit me twice on the foot, which is causing quite a bit of pain,” Klaasen added.
Klaasen, who was eventually dismissed for 109, further explained, “It’s just pure emotion. Yeah, once again, I’m sorry for him and to the English boys. Sometimes it’s difficult to control.”
“But I did apologize straight away and spoke to him after the game, and hopefully, from my side, everything is sorted,” he concluded.
England captain Jos Buttler weighed in, saying, “I don’t think he needed to celebrate in Mark Wood’s face.”
“Credit to him,” Buttler acknowledged, “he recognized that a couple of seconds after, and he apologized. There are no ill feelings there.”
Henrich Klassen’s ton and Coetzee’s 3 wickets guide SA to big win over ENG
Youngster Gerald Coetzee took 3 as England self-destructed and lost to South Africa by 229 runs at the Wankhede on Saturday. The top 8 batters in the England lineup failed to even reach 20 runs before a late flurry by Gus Atkinson and Mark Wood helped England reach a respectable total of 170.
Earlier, on the back of brilliant innings from Henrich Klassen and cameos from Jansen, Hendricks, and Van der Dussen, the Proteas posted a mammoth total of 399/5 on the board. Despite Reece Topley and Adil Rashid chipping in with a few wickets, it is a sorry-looking bowling card for England. This defeat will make it difficult for Jos Buttler’s side to make it to the semi-finals.
Earlier, Jos Buttler won the toss and opted to bowl first. Temba Bavuma was ruled out of the match due to illness. Aiden Markram to lead the side.
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