Marizanne Kapp and I are the best opening bowling pair – Shabnim Ismail

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Shabnim Ismail believes she and Marizanne Kapp form the best opening bowling partnership in the world.
“I always say that me and Marizanne Kapp go hand-in-hand in the bowling,“ Ismail said after the match. I always told everyone that we are the best opening pair and accommodate each other very well, and the way we performed today displayed our talent out there.”
Ismail picked up 3 for 10 in South Africa’s victory over Sri Lanka in the Women’s World T20 on Monday, while Kapp picked up 1 for 13. Together they held Sri Lanka to 16 for 2 in the Powerplay before Ismail returned to clean up the tail at the death.
Ismail is one of the fastest bowlers in the women’s game, having reached speeds in the late 120 kphs in international cricket. She joked that 130 kph might be achievable, if she hits the gym to bulk up her slender frame. “Mignon’s [du Preez] husband always tells me that he wants me to reach the 130 mark,” Ismail said. “So I think I need to go to the gym and pump some iron so I can get up there.”
While the bowling performance set up South Africa’s win, Ismail conceded that as a unit they could do better after giving up 24 extras, including 19 wides. “We always speak about the extras in T20s. It’s only 120 balls and we gave about 25 extras. We’re definitely going to work on that. If the rain holds up, maybe we can go to the nets and just work on the extras.
“The rain in St. Lucia has hampered South Africa’s preparations, while their batting has faltered in their warm-up matches ahead of the tournament. But Ismail said the win has given her teammates a “positive mindset.”
“Although the weather wasn’t on our side and we never had any practices – this was our first proper time out there in the middle – the way we displayed our talent and got the win out there was fantastic,” Ismail said. “There is a positive mindset within the camp now.”
South Africa’s batting also came good when it really mattered in their World T20 opener, Kapp and captain Dane van Niekerk sharing a 67-run stand that sealed the match.
“The four [warm-up] games we played, we lost. The batters always let us down, but the way we capitalised today showed a lot of character. Hopefully, we can keep backing the batters.
“Although we lost two earlier wickets up front [today], there wasn’t any panic in the changing room, we just knew we were going to win this. The way Marizanne and Dane capitalised in the middle showed a lot of character that just made it easy for us to get the win.” (ESPN cricinfo)

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