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Home > Cricket > World Cup 2003 > Reuters > Report

Defeat down to matter of seconds: Pollock

Marcus Prior | February 10, 2003 10:59 IST

Captain Shaun Pollock put his side's epic defeat by West Indies in the World Cup's opening game down to a matter of seconds after South Africa were docked one over because of slow bowling rate.

South Africa came up three runs short chasing 279 for victory from 49 overs, although the fact they even came close was largely down to an extraordinary innings by Lance Klusener.

The left-hander struck five sixes in a rapid half-century but was caught in the deep in the final over, eight runs short of seeing his side to victory.

"When it comes down to seconds you do feel a little bit hard done by," a visibly exhausted Pollock said.

"The ball was lost in the sightscreen and then the sightscreen wouldn't turn over and the drinks trolley doesn't come on too quick. All those things are taken on board by the umpires and they said to us that we were just a couple of seconds or so short of having the full 50.

"If we'd had an extra over we could have taken things a bit easier, but that was the decision and when we went out to bat we knew it was 49 so we can't complain.

"To get so close you do feel a bit robbed but we didn't play well enough in the middle period of the game to warrant really getting that close," Pollock said.

West Indies captain Carl Hooper said he was particularly pleased to have beaten one of the sides he expects to play a major part in the latter stages of the tournament.

"Victory was important in the context of the tournament," Hooper said. "I would expect a team like South Africa to go through to the next round so it makes victory against them important.

"It sets up the tournament for us in that we're off to a good start. That's good for confidence."

Hooper said he was not surprised at the way South Africa forced a close finish despite looking dead and buried before Klusener's assault.

"Playing against a side like South Africa, even though they were struggling in the early stages and we kept chipping away and taking wickets, we always knew they would put up a fight.

"As you saw at the end, Lance Klusener really brought them close."

Pollock also paid tribute to Klusener, whose innings was in stark contrast to the form he has shown in recent months.

"I don't think it's ever over while Lance is at the crease. He's struggled in the last few months with his batting but today he showed the value of what Lance Klusener brings to the party.

"It was a superb knock and ideally you would have liked that last shot to have gone out of the ground, but it didn't.

"Without him though we wouldn't have had a chance - he was superb."

© Copyright 2003 Reuters Limited. All rights reserved. Republication or redistribution of Reuters content, including by framing or similar means, is expressly prohibited without the prior written consent of Reuters. Reuters shall not be liable for any errors or delays in the content, or for any actions taken in reliance thereon.

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Number of User Comments: 8

Sub: SA batting

I don't understand this. Every article talks about klusener's knock and how SA can never be counted out. I was watching the complete match and ...

Posted by Weekes

Sub: Docking of Overs

Even one over getting docked has a serious impact on any team trying to chase a descent total.Ganguly needs to be careful in such occasion, ...

Posted by Parashar Banerjee


South africa is a Team U can never Under-estimate.They might Have had an unexpected start to their World Cup campaign.. but expect them to bounce ...

Posted by varun


The match just proves thst class is permanent and form is temporary.Both Lara and Klusner are two class players and just that they were not ...



The match just proves thst class is permanent and form is temporry.Both Lara and Klusner are two class players and just that they were not ...



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