ENG vs SA Live: South Africa skipper Temba Bavuma eyes semifinals spot with Australia win, not focused on net run rate

South Africa captain Temba Bavuma says first and foremost his side are concentrating on beating a rampant England in their final Twenty20 World Cup Group 1 game in Sharjah, and discussions over their net run rate can come later.

South Africa are level with second-placed Australia on six points in the pool, but the latter have the advantage of a better net run rate and will meet out of touch West Indies prior to the match against England.

If South Africa can better Australia’s result, they will advance to the semifinals, but if the latter are victorious then Bavuma’s team will at least know what the measure of their victory must be. But he is not concerned about that for now.

“It’s obviously a big game. Some have even called it as a ‘quarterfinal’,” Bavuma told reporters on Friday. “So I think from that point of view, and looking at our expectations as a team coming to this event, we want to play our best cricket.

“With Australia currently number two in our group, with their superior run rate, there’s not much we can do from that point of view. I think the first point when we go out would be to just win the game.”

South Africa narrowly lost to Australia in their tournament opener and then had the furore of the Quinton de Kock kneeling scandal.

But they have put those two setbacks behind them and steadily improved with bat and ball as the World Cup has gone on.

“Every game we only speak about fighting it out as a team. We don’t rely on individual brilliance to bring it home, it’s all about us as a team giving everything. England is obviously a strong side. We’ve seen that not just in this tournament but over the years. As a team we know that we’ll have to be at our best in all our departments”.

“What’s happening with Australia, West Indies, I guess what helps us is that their game happens before our game, so we’ll kind of get a better sense or understanding as to how we need to approach the England game.

“But I think the first point, without reading too much into everything else, is to win the game, and then we can take it from there.”