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T20 World Cup 2024: It's gut-wrenching, says dejected Markram

South Africa lost when they had to score 30 from 30 balls.
Last Updated : 30 June 2024, 17:42 IST

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Barbados: When Aiden Markram sat behind the microphone in the aftermath of the toughest loss of his career, you could tell he hadn’t yet really let what unfolded at the Kensington Oval sink in. 

There was no point in asking about the same for he didn’t know how to verbalise what he felt, not yet, maybe ever, but he knew that his team had allowed India to wear the T20 World Cup crown when they should’ve closed them out when they had the chance. 

“For now, it stings a bit, but it's good for it to sting. It gives you that little bit of fire in the belly for the next time that you're here,” he said, naturally holding back a lot of pent-up emotions from the happenings from 30 minutes ago. 

“It’s just gut-wrenching – that’s really what it is. Each player has been on a different individual journey to get to this first final. Ultimately you become tight as a group. You want good things to happen to this group because you know they're great people and when you get close like that, especially the nature of how the game went, obviously adds to the emotions. It's one of those things but yeah, we can channel it moving forward but I think the next couple of days you let it be, you let yourself feel the way you want to feel and then really start reflecting positively.”

India had put up 176 for 2, and South Africa looked well on their course to winning their maiden ICC title, but something just came undone. 

Yes, the Indians were fine with the ball in the last five overs, but this was a battle lost in the mind. Years of carrying the tag of ‘chokers’ can’t be good for your system. 

South Africa lost when they had to score 30 from 30 balls. As inexplicable as that was, Markram tried to soften the blow by saying that plenty of teams had lost from that situation. 

“It’s not the first game of cricket that’s been lost with a team needing 30 of 30 – it’s more that India were allowed to bowl well, they're allowed to field well, they're allowed to go from that position to a position of strength,” he explained.

“It happens often in this game. As I mentioned, right now pinpointing something (the cause for the failure) is quite tough but we'll reflect over the next few days, over the next few weeks, try and find areas that we could have maybe improved during today's game, but also to highlight the things that went well for us.”

On cue, to console himself more than convince the generous audience in attendance, he said: “… but it’s a sport at the end of the day. Someone's going to win, someone's going to lose. And we'll try to use it to fire us up for future events.”

As for the game itself, Markram said things happened too quickly in the chase that it’s tough to establish the root cause for what can best be described as a debacle. 

“They bowled well in the back end and had very simple plans and executed it well. From a run a ball it can go to ten an over in the space of one over. So, your game plan as a batter changes. You're potentially thinking you're keeping the ball on the ground, running hard until the job's done and the bowler bowls a good over. Next thing you'd be searching for boundaries and everything changes quickly like that,” he said. 

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Published 30 June 2024, 17:42 IST

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