South Africa suffered arguably the biggest upset of at least their recent history earlier this week when they were beaten by Ireland in the second ODI.
Their bowling, which is still considered the better facet or their game, was for once ordinary at best as Irish batters bled them for 290 runs.
In the run chase, the Proteas were doing fine at 159-2 when Janneman Malan departed for 84 and after that even though a number of African batters got starts, none took responsibility and stuck around for longer to finish the game.
In the third and final game, the responsibility will be on South African bowlers, especially Kagiso Rabada and Anrich Nortje to pick up early wickets and not let the Irish pile up a big enough score that their weak batting unit cannot get to.
For Ireland, it was Andy Balbirnie’s captain’s knock that proved pivotal in getting them a famous win over a traditional heavyweight the size of South Africa.
The captain’s century was central but he wasn’t the only batter that produced the goods on the day. In fact, all of the top five Irish batters at least contributed 27 runs each to the tally, which shows that their win was no fluke and that they can do it again.
There will be almost no pressure on the Irish in the final ODI, thanks to their victory in the second ODI as well as the no-result in the opening ODI that was washed out due to rain.
Like their batting, their bowling performance was also a varied one, with all six of their bowlers picking at least a wicket each. When that’s usually the case and the combinations are set, it warrants no changes in the next match.