MELBOURNE: South Africa captain AB de Villiers lashed out at his team after their massive 130-run loss to India in the World Cup on Sunday, saying it was an “unacceptable” performance.
After defending champions India had piled up 307 for seven, with opener Shikhar Dhawan making 137, the Proteas were bundled out for 177 with almost 10 overs to spare in front of a huge crowd of 86,878 at the Melbourne Cricket Ground.
“All round we were very average,” said de Villiers. “We lacked discipline in the field with dropped catches and untidy bowling and two run-outs in our innings was unacceptable.”
The skipper himself was run out through a smart throw from the deep by Mohit Sharma and David Miller followed in similar fashion soon afterwards.
Faf du Plessis was the Proteas’ top-scorer with 55, the skipper’s 30 the only other notable contribution.
“You always feel the pressure of chasing 300, like playing shots you may not want to,” said de Villiers. “But the top six are there to win games. Two run-outs in the top five is not what we want.
“It was a disappointing performance with both bat and ball. No excuses, we should have come up better today.”
The captain said losing the toss and batting second under lights contributed to South Africa’s defeat.
“It was a good wicket to bat on in the afternoon,” he said. “But there was wear and tear in the evening. Without making excuses, I can say it was a bit two-paced as the match went on.
“It was a big knock for us to be beaten by 130 runs. We need to lick our wounds a while because confidence takes a knock.”
However, de Villiers was confident his team, who’ve now won one and lost one at this tournament after seeing off Zimbabwe, will bounce back for their Pool B game against the West Indies in Sydney on Friday.
“We have a mature group of players,” he said. “We need to regroup before Friday and I am confident we will bounce back.”
The overwhelming bulk of fans in a crowd of nearly 87,000 were India supporters but de Villiers insisted a raucous atmosphere had not contributed to South Africa’s emphatic loss.
“I don’t think that was the case,” he said. “As Hashim (Amla) said to me, India batted well. And we need to win games anywhere in the world if we want to be the best cricket team in the world. (AFP)