Cricket World Cup 2019: Chris Gayle duel with Kagiso Rabada and other key battles for South Africa v Windies

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Gayle's battle with Rabada will be an entertaining one.

Monday’s clash in the 2019 ICC World Cup promises to be a treat with both South Africa and West Indies looking to bounce back from recent disappointments.

South Africa are still searching for their first win of the tournament after facing three losses, while Windies come into the clash on the back of a defeat to defending champions Australia.

There is little to choose from between the two sides and the final outcome of the match could well be dependent on several sub-plots. Here, we look at the three key duels which could shape Monday’s clash at Southampton:

THOMAS V AMLA

One Windies player who has caught the eye in their brief campaign so far is pacer Oshane Thomas who has proved to be a menace with the new ball.

The 22-year-old has cranked up the pace in this World Cup with his excellent displays earning him six wickets in two matches. Thomas can be a bit wayward at times but he is also capable of the utterly sublime as seen by his dismissal of opener Aaron Finch in the loss to Australia.

The young pacer will be looking to provide a similar fast start against South Africa and will be aiming for the scalp of veteran opener Hashim Amla. The 36-year-old has not had the best of World Cups so far with just 19 runs in two innings and he has only recently recovered from a blow to the head he sustained in the tournament opener against England.

With South Africa under massive pressure, there is even greater onus on Amla to fire at the top but he will first need to quell the challenge of Thomas. The right-hander did score an unbeaten half-century against the same opposition in the warm-ups and will look to draw confidence from that innings.

Amla is in desperate need of runs.

Amla is in desperate need of runs.

TAHIR V RUSSELL

Another intriguing duel lies in store in the middle overs where Windies star all-rounder Andre Russell could potentially be up against South Africa leg-spinner Imran Tahir.

Russell has been earmarked as one of the biggest Windies threat in the World Cup following his sensational showings in the IPL for Kolkata Knight Riders and the muscular all-rounder has looked brilliant with the ball in hand.

While his bowling has seen him fetch four wickets in two games, the right-hander has failed to come to the party with the bat so far. His manner of dismissal against Mitchell Starc of Australia was a dismal one and cost his team dearly in the end.

He will be itching to make amends for that display against the Proteas, but will need to deal with the guile and variations of veteran leg-spinner Tahir.

The 40-year-old South African went wicket-less against India in his most recent outing but he did pick up four scalps in his side’s two previous clashes. He is among the most prolific wrist-spinners in business currently and his lethal accuracy could be a handy weapon against an aggressive Russell.

Russell will be keen to make amends.

Russell will be keen to make amends.

RABADA V GAYLE

The biggest battle on Monday will undoubtedly be the one between Chris Gayle and Kagiso Rabada with the new ball.

The veteran Windies opener is one of the modern-day ODI greats with over 10,000 and 25 centuries in the format. Young Rabada, on the other hand, is playing in his first World Cup but has already established himself as one of the top pacers across all formats.

‘Universe Boss’ Gayle started off his final World Cup campaign with a brisk fifty against Pakistan and was looking good before being dismissed in a brief cameo against Australia. The Jamaican will be keen to play a much bigger innings against the South Africans but has his task cut out against a charged up Rabada.

The 24-year-old was one of the rare bright spots for the Proteas in their defeat to India and bowled a fiery spell with the new-ball while claiming two wickets. He express pace and accuracy should give 39-year-old Gayle plenty of troubles and the veteran will need to be on the top of his game if he is to prevail in this duel.

Rabada was in menacing form against India.

Rabada was in menacing form against India.

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Cricket World Cup 2019 LIVE: India and Australia tussle in crunch clash at The Oval

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India are up against defending champions Australia.

Two of the big contenders for the 2019 ICC World Cup meet as Australia and India lock horns at The Oval in London.

Defending champions Australia are searching for their third straight win of the World Cup campaign after defeating Afghanistan and West Indies in their previous clashes.

India, on the other hand, are in action for the only the second time in the tournament following their six-wicket win over South Africa in the campaign opener.

Will India avenge their semi-final defeat to Australia in the 2015 World Cup or will the reigning world champions continue to assert their supremacy in the competition? Find out by following the ball-ball-ball commentary from London below.

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Cricket World Cup 2019: Watch Kane Williamson react after New Zealand beat Afghanistan

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New Zealand skipper Kane Williamson was a happy man after Afghanistan were beaten by seven wickets on Saturday at Cricket World Cup 2019.

Hashmatullah Shahidi’s 59 made him the top scorer for the Asian nation as they registered 172 all out, a total that was overhauled with 17.5 overs to spare courtesy of Black Caps skipper Williamson’s 79 not out at at Taunton.

Williamson spoke to the media after the contest and cut a contented figure:










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