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HindustanTimes Fri,19 Dec 2014
Not avoiding my part in collapse
Jacques Kallis, Hindustan Times
March 27, 2011
First Published: 00:58 IST(27/3/2011)
Last Updated: 01:01 IST(27/3/2011)
New Zealand players, Kyle Mills, Daniel Vettori, Scott Styris and Tim Southee surround South Africa's Faf du Plessis, as they celebrate the fall of South Africa's AB de Villiers, not seen, during the cricket World Cup quarterfinal match in Dhaka.

Unfortunately, this is a familiar feeling. It started in Karachi in 1996, when I was at the beginning of my career, and moved to Birmingham, Durban and St Lucia, but the feeling of bitter disappointment, after being knocked out of a World Cup, has stayed.

There's no point analysing the match at the moment though I'm not avoiding my part in starting the collapse. Another couple of metres either way and it would have been a four, or even a six, but it was a brilliant catch by Jacob Oram, and that was that.

South Africa went down fighting
It was always our intention to play positive, attacking cricket throughout the tournament and, at least, we stuck by that and went down fighting. It's so easy for people to say, "He shouldn't have played that shot", but they don't say anything when it goes to the boundary.

I have become used to the world media focussing on South Africa's shortcomings every time we lose a match during an ICC tournament, but that attitude consistently fails to give credit where it is due to our opposition.

Give Vettori's boys due credit
Daniel Vettori deserves a huge amount of credit for just getting onto the field. The Kiwi bowling and Vettori's captaincy were superb. He knew exactly what his plan was and both he and Nathan McCullum bowled superbly to make it happen.

On a slow pitch, where the ball gets soft after about 20-25 overs, the 10-over period between the 25th and 34th overs becomes very important, often crucial. Unfortunately, we lost four wickets in that period and that was where the game was won and lost.

Hope India-Pak tie is incident-free
Right now, all I can focus on is getting home to Cape Town. I have no doubt that I will turn the television on for the semifinals, but I won't be sitting in front of it all day. But India versus Pakistan in Mohali is a spectacle not to be ignored. Like everyone else, my greatest wish is that the match takes place without any 'incident', either on or off the field.

India will be favourites
After India's fantastic performance against Australia, they will be full of confidence and must start as favourites. They keep making plans to counter every situation and there's no reason why they can't do that again, now that they are only two matches away from becoming world champions.

At least, South Africa can take a small amount of consolation from the fact that India's coaching team comes from Cape Town.

The tournament was efficiently run and the host countries deserve credit for that. It was, by general agreement, too long, but it was not the fault of those who were in charge of the ground.

I'm not sure whether I'll be around for another try at the World Cup - I'll be 39 by then. I'll wait and see what Sachin does before I decide!

Hawkeye


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