JOHANNESBURG – The Proteas Women are gearing up for their T20 World Cup semifinal against host nation Australia on Thursday.South Africa have shown excellent form in the tournament, topping their group with three wins from four matches; the fourth match was abandoned due to rain.Despite their dominance in the group stages, South Africa are heading into relatively uncharted territory as they take part in just their second semifinal while their opponents have won the tournament four times.The last time this group was in a semifinal, they lost to England with just two balls to spare in 2017 50 over World Cup.No less than 10 players in the current squad were part of that team three years ago and skipper, Dane van Niekerk said they have taken a different approach to this tournament.“The thing that we focus on is ourselves, and we didn’t try and focus too much on other teams. You can get lost in a tournament like that if you focus on other teams more. We are just trying to build on what we’ve been doing well every game and we try to build on that. We tried to block the negatives as much as possible”, she said.South Africa have a dismal record against the tournament hosts, having never beat the Aussies in 15 ODIs and 4 T20s.Despite that unwanted record, van Niekerk believes that form goes out the window in these kinds of matches.“We said from the start that this is the best chance South Africa has to win a World Cup, we’ve got the best team here that we’ve picked in a very long time. It’s a semifinal, anything can happen, whatever happens on the day, again we’re going to focus on doing well and forget about the records. It doesn’t matter in a high-pressure game like tomorrow and hopefully we can get one up on them for the first time in I guess forever”, she said.The Proteas could go into the game with their backs even more against the wall with the possibility that Marizanne Kapp could not feature.The all-rounder missed training on Wednesday through precautionary rest and will be further assessed on Thursday morning.Kapp has only played two games at the tournament as she recovers from a respiratory tract infection.Van Niekerk said there were players who could step up if Kapp didn’t feature.“It is the semifinal, yes, but a player’s health is more important than a game I guess. We are lucky enough to have 15 very talented cricketers here, so whatever decision is made, I’m confident that players will pick up their hands and try and make sure that she’s not missed too much”, she said.The game is set to under way at 10 am (SA time) while the first semifinal between England and India gets under way at 06 am (SA time).
Proteas Women out to make history at T20 World Cup
Wednesday 4 15:54