South African Seamers’ tactics
The South African seamers in the fifth ODI showed a lot of discipline. The pacers were quick to identify that the wicket had some good pace on offer and used the odd bouncers effectively. Rabada got the priced wicket of Guptill by setting him up very early in the inning. After pushing Guptill on the backfoot by bowling a well directed short delivery, he slipped a yorker that beat the kiwi’s bat bowling him out.
Lack of Strike rotation from the Kiwis
Strike rotation has been a perennial problem for the kiwis throughout the series. Since the South African bowlers went through New Zealand’s top order, AB de Villiers kept extra fielders inside the circle for almost the entire innings to prevent the batsmen from scoring singles.
The bowlers too bowled according to the field which yielded in 68 dot balls inside first 15 overs. Lack of runs on board and strike rotation added pressure on themselves, resulting in no momentum for the Kiwis throughout the innings.
Jeetan Patel’s bunny
After coming into the series on the back of five consecutive fifty plus scores, it needed a peach of a delivery to dismiss the inform Quinton de Kock. It was Jeetan Patel who put de Kock’s record run to an end in the fourth ODI and also got the better of him in the 5th ODI. de Kock has now scored just 1 run and has got out twice in seven deliveries he has faced against the kiwi off-spinner.
Skipper Williamson could have deployed a spinner
After producing scores of 28, 3 and 1 in the series, David Miller was low on confidence when he came in to bat at 88/4 after de Villiers’ dismissal. Miller in the series so far has had a poor outing against the spinners scoring just 22 runs and dismissed on three occasions. Considering the collapses witnessed in the South African middle order in each of the previous ODIs in the series, Williamson deployed his seamers for 4 overs before giving the ball to Patel, which in the context of the game was a bit late.
Imran Tahir’s most Economical spell
Imran Tahir continued his positive run at Eden Park, finishing with his most economical figures in ODI cricket. His ten over spell only went for 14 runs and bagged two wickets and 46 dot balls. He made use of his googly to good extent and also his accuracy with the line and length did not allow the New Zealand batsmen to get after him.
His economy rate of 1.4 is the best economy by a South African spinner in an ODI, having bowled their full quota of overs.