'Need to be smart'

Cruising towards victory at 152 for four, needing 191, South Africa lost their last six wickets for 37 to go down by one run, thereby leaving the series beautifully balanced at 1-1.
“We have to pick ourselves up. We don’t become bad players after one loss. We have to work on our decision-making with the bat. We weren’t smart enough, especially with the bat. We needed to be a bit more solid, instead of searching for the glory,” the skipper remarked, referring to needless and ill-advised displays of aggression mainly from JP Duminy and David Miller.

Reiterating his disappointment at some of the strokes from his batsmen, the captain went on, “I don’t think it was a free-flowing wicket. It was not easy to play your shots, you had to work hard out there. We had to put in a solid performance, not go looking for glory.”
Smith made a match-high 77, but it was his dismissal, dragging Munaf Patel on, that triggered the unbelievable collapse. “If I could have batted through, it would have been wonderful,” Smith reasoned. “I got done by a good slower ball. We didn’t do well tonight with the bat and we need to look at that. When I was dismissed, we needed only 29 (actually, 39) for victory, we should have still got over the line.”

Patel and Smith were team-mates at Rajasthan Royals. “The wicket suited his style,” Smith observed. “He changes his pace very well, bowls some subtle slower balls. I always thought he was going to be the key factor, and so he proved to be.”

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