South Africa and Zimbabwe’s 18th match of the ICC Men’s T20 World Cup 2022 in Hobart was abandoned due to heavy rain and concluded without a conclusion.
The Proteas were cruising at 51 for no loss in three overs, with opener Quinton de Kock (47* off 18 balls) in fine form, having led Zimbabwe reach their initial target of 80 in nine overs, which was later reduced to 64 in seven overs due to a minor rain delay.
But as it did in the semi-final of the 1992 World Cup and the 2003 World Cup, rain again penetrated the playing area and caused havoc, forcing the cancellation of the match.
At the press conference following the game, Boucher acknowledged that rain hasn’t always been kind to them. But it would be better if it happened in the first game, when we still had options.
Boucher stated that his team was eager to continue playing even though South Africa was only 13 runs away from finishing their chase.
“We wanted to play in this World Cup, and we are here to do so. At first, it appeared that both captains wanted to participate. The field was quite wet during the previous match between Bangladesh and the Netherlands, which was played at the same venue. Players don’t make those decisions, to put it simply. The decision-making is done by the officials.
If Zimbabwe had been in a strong position, they would have wanted to keep playing, according to Mark Boucher.We were in a very advantageous situation. So if we leave this game feeling like we were treated unfairly and whether the game should have happened or not… Zimbabwe would have wanted to continue playing if they were in our shoes.
However, Zimbabwean coach Dave Houghton feels that his team shouldn’t have even attempted to bowl a ball.
Houghton claimed that the Bellerive Oval’s conditions were dangerous and absurd.
The Zimbabwean coach stated, “I understand the necessity to try and get these games (played) for the public and the people watching on TV, and the need to try and play and achieve a result in slightly adverse weather.”
But in this game, I believe we went beyond that line. There were four or five overs, in my opinion, where we ought to have punted.
To be truthful, I don’t think we should have bowled a ball at all. However, those making the judgments in the centre are the umpires, and they appeared to believe that it was appropriate to play. Even when I disagree, there isn’t much I can do off the field.
“At one point, the rain had gotten so bad it was absurd. It was misty and drizzled for the majority of the evening, but it eventually got to the point where we could hear it banging on the roof in the dugout.”
“That no longer seems like mizzle and drizzle to me. It is now time to leave the playing area. I don’t believe the circumstances were appropriate to continue playing,” he concluded.