Preview: England v South Africa

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Football News

England T20 captain Stuart Broad has expressed the importance of momentum in the World Twenty20 with his side taking confidence into the crucial game against South Africa in Chittagong on Saturday.

A wonderful individual display from Alex Hales helped England to a six wicket win over Sri Lanka with his unbeaten 116 on Thursday and there is no time to dwell on that superb victory with another must-win game taking place on Saturday.

South Africa have won two and lost one of their opening fixtures while Broad’s men could join them, level on four points with a win leading into the final group game against the Netherlands on Monday. That would mean England give themselves the best possible chance to qualify for the semi-finals after losing the opening game against New Zealand via the Duckworth Lewis method.

A 152-run partnership between Hales and Eoin Morgan rescued the entire World Cup campaign after the pair recovered from losing two wickets in the first over, without scoring a run. That meant Morgan joined the opener at the crease with the score on 0-2, chasing 190 to win the game.

The Middlesex middle-order batsman batted superbly to reach 55 and Ravi Bopara also chipped in with a brace of crucial boundaries in the closing overs before Hales smashed a maximum to win the game.

Fast-bowler and skipper Broad has been speaking to the media ahead of their third game in Chittagong and he told Sky Sports they are a confident group of players.

"T20 is a momentum game and the innings we chased against Sri Lanka was one of the best I've ever witnessed," admitted Broad.

"The confidence and belief we will get from that going into our final two group games is going to be huge. It's in our hands a little bit now.

"If we had lost against Sri Lanka we were pretty much out of the World Cup. With that sort of pressure, it's exciting to see players come through that.

"We have got two group games left and we're very confident we can do well in those.

"We know what these tournaments are like, if you can get on a run, if you can get a few guys going you can win these tournaments and it's not out of our grasp."

It was not all plane sailing for England with a number of dropped catches disrupting their performance in the field which was most unlike England in recent times and that is something Broad is all too aware needs to improve.

"Our batting is obviously firing but we need to up the standard of our fielding.

"Our fielding has been our strong point in the last three weeks, we have been awesome, so to miss chances against key men hurt us.

"We could have easily restricted Sri Lanka to 150 on that wicket: we could have done, but we didn't.

"If we take our catches we will stand ourselves in a much better chance on Saturday."

After the Sri Lanka game, Broad said it was wettest cricket field he had played on with the dew factor coming into play under the lights. That could be used to their advantage because both of South Africa’s games have been played at the earlier time of 15.30 local time whereas England’s games have so far been 19.30.

"We have got the advantage of having played a few games under the lights here," he said.

"Conditions are extremely different from anything we've had before and South Africa haven't played under the lights yet.

"But we've got the experience of that. It can give us a little bit of an edge if we use it wisely."

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T20 World Cup
South Africa cricket
England cricket

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