South Africa's World Cup campaign is off to a disastrous start suffering two clinical losses against hosts England in the tournament opener and then to Bangladesh. The Proteas succumbed to a disappointing 21-run defeat at the hands of the Tigers at the Kennington Oval, London on Sunday (June 2).
In the fifth match of the tournament, the Mashrafe Mortaza-led team posted a daunting first innings total on the back of brilliant knocks from Mushfiqur Rahim and Shakib Al Hasan. In the second innings, the Bangladesh bowlers displayed sensational clinical efforts to restrict the South African team and in turn powered their team to a splendid win.
To add to their misery Proteas veteran opening batsman Hashim Amla is also struggling to attain complete fitness. He retired hurt after sustaining a massive blow on the helmet off a fierce short ball delivery bowled by England speedster Jofra Archer in the tournament opener. Although Amla came out to bat later in the innings, he was assessed to have suffered a concussion and thus, the opener was rested for yesterday's clash against Bangladesh.
"During the last match, he sustained a blow to the to the helmet. When he came off the field he was assessed. There were concussion assessment tests done as well as various computerised assessments done. Initially the results were what we call inconclusive,” quoted Dr. Mohammed Moosajee, the South African team doctor.
The plan is to get him ready for the match against India, informs Dr. Mohammed Moosajee
The South African team doctor revealed that after being hit by the bouncer Amla had gone for repeated tests and was then cleared to bat in the opening game. He mentioned that the plan is now to ensure that the veteran is fit and ready for the crucial game against India scheduled on June 5, Wednesday in Southampton.
"Repeat tests were done about an hour later which were much clearer than the ones before, and that's why the decision was made to let him go out there and bat. Subsequent to the match, the next day, he felt some symptoms and there for as a precaution, we decided to rest him from this game. The plan is to get him ready for the match against India on Wednesday in Southampton," he added.
During the first innings of the match against Bangladesh, South Africa dealt with another huge blow. Their premier pacer Lungi Ngidi was forced to leave the field midway after suffering an injury to his left hand after bowling only four overs. Dr. Moosajee admitted that Ngidi will not be available for the India clash as he will be requiring seven to ten days in order to regain complete fitness.
"He sustained sharp discomfort in his left hamstring after bowling the fourth over today. He came off. He was assessed and clinically we felt that he had a left hamstring strain. We decided not to let him go out there and bowl any further in this match. It probably means that he'll be out for about a week to ten days, but we'll have scans done tomorrow. The plan will be probably to get him ready for the West Indies match [on June 10]," informed the Proteas team doctor.
South Africa are struggling with a flurry of injury issues and that also to their key players. While speaking on Dale Steyn's recovery progress, Dr. Mohammed Moosajee said, “He's making decent progress. We'll make a call before the India game as to where he is currently. The plan was always to try to get him ready for the India or the West Indies game.”