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SA VS NED: Netherlands produce another big upset of ODI World Cup 2023, Beat high-flying South Africa

SA VS NED: In the end, the events in Dharamsala left everyone baffled, in recent cricket news. South Africa, considered heavyweight of ODI World Cup 2023, faced off against the Netherlands, an associate nation.

Just three months ago, Netherlands coach Ryan Cook had fervently requested sponsorship and some warm-up matches in India after qualifying for the World Cup. When they arrived, the Dutch team had to scout for net bowlers, receiving 10,000 applications and selecting just four, including a food delivery worker.

Describing this as a “David vs Goliath” scenario might be an understatement. However, none of these factors seemed to matter, because October 17th will forever be etched in history as the day the Netherlands defeated South Africa in an ODI World Cup match.

The Dutch had previously stunned South Africa in the T20 World Cup in Adelaide last November, but this was seen as too significant a format for South Africa to falter. Rain shortened the game to a 43-overs-per-side match, and it also affected the pitch conditions.

SA VS NED: Netherlands Beat high-flying South Africa with an all-round performance and a high morale

Choosing to field first, South Africa made early breakthroughs, but the Netherlands persevered under the leadership of captain Scott Edwards. Edwards played a crucial innings of 78 not out, guiding his team from 140/7 to a total of 245/8, with valuable contributions from Roelof van der Merwe and Aryan Dutt. With the ball, van der Merwe, who was born in South Africa, dismissed Temba Bavuma’s middle stump after Quinton de Kock was caught off a top edge. South Africa lost quick wickets, and at one point, they were 44/4.

Heinrich Klaasen fought hard for his run-a-ball 28, but his dismissal marked a turning point. South Africa continued to lose wickets due to some senseless shots, such as expansive cover drives, sweeps, and reverse sweeps, which led to their predicament.

However, South Africa appeared to have control of the match by the 34th over of the Netherlands’ innings, with the Dutch at 140/7 and only lower-order batsmen left. But the Dutch staged a comeback with vital partnerships, making the most of South Africa’s errors, including conceding wides and dropping catches.

Captain Edwards played aggressively, consistently sweeping Keshav Maharaj through backward square leg. South Africa’s bowlers struggled to find the right lengths, and Edwards took full advantage. Although South Africa resorted to using pacers, it didn’t change the course of the game. Edwards and his partners, van der Merwe and Aryan Dutt capitalized on South Africa’s struggles and exploited vacant areas with well-placed shots.

This match was the start of a memorable turnaround for the Netherlands and a day that South Africa won’t forget easily.

Also read: AFG VS ENG: Afghanistan thrash defending champion England to Spice up the World Cup 2023

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