South Africa may find an unexpected ally in Mother Nature in pursuing their first-ever ICC World Cup title against Australia. There has been a rain forecast for Kolkata, the match venue. But the Proteas are no strangers to dealing with weather-related challenges. The weather forecast indicates a 50% chance of rain on Thursday and a substantial 90% chance on Friday, designated as the reserve day in case of rain delays.
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With memories of past heartbreaks in World Cup semi-finals, including the dramatic tied result against Australia in 1999 and the rain-induced exits in 2003 and 2015, the Proteas are poised to face whatever challenges come their way. The spectre of the scoreboard flashing 22 runs off one ball in the 1992 semi-finals is still vivid in the minds of many fans, marking a generation since South Africa’s World Cup debut. The possibility of rain may be a twist of fate that the Proteas wouldn’t mind, considering their tumultuous history in the tournament.
As the Proteas prepare for the semi-final, officials and ground staff will strive to ensure the game proceeds as scheduled. The umpires can reduce the match to a minimum of 20 overs per side, activating the reserve day if needed. While reaching the final through washed-out fixtures may not be the ideal scenario for South Africa, it remains a prospect that the Proteas and the entire nation would welcome, as it keeps their hopes alive in the tournament.
Picture: X / RaophalaM
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