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20-Nov-2014 10:50:00 GMT
Australia v South Africa, 4th ODI, Melbourne

South Africa Aim to Level the Series at MCG

Melbourne: Trailing 2-1 in the five-ODI series, South Africa go into the fourth one-day international at the Melbourne Cricket Ground with an aim to level the series and give themselves a fair chance to win the trophy when they meet for the final ODI in Sydney.

More than anything, the series is being seen as a clash between the two teams who have the requisite skill sets to be termed as title contenders of the 2015 World Cup.

South Africa boast of one of modern cricket's most potent pace bowling attacks in Dale Steyn, Morne Morkel and Vernon Philander but that has not come in the way of Australia's 2-1 lead.

South Africa lost convincingly despite a brilliant century from Hashim Amla in the third ODI at Manuka Oval in Canberra. The fact that South Africa lost their last six wickets for 32 runs after AB de Villiers' dismissal speaks of a team which simply refuses to go beyond the went down fighting way.

The hosts have batted first in all three games so far, scoring 300-plus twice, and twice ended up winning. Barring the collapse suffered in Perth in second ODI, their batting has looked intimidating.

With Aaron Finch and David Warner at the top, the hosts would hope for another good batting show at the MCG.

Steven Smith capitalised on the opportunity with 73 off 55 balls, which proved a match-turning innings. The hosts would also take confidence from Mitchell Starc's performance in the absence of Mitchell Johnson.

Teams from

Australia: David Warner, Aaron Finch, Shane Watson, Steven Smith, George Bailey (Capt.), Matthew Wade (wk), Mitchell Marsh, Mitchell Starc, Kane Richardson, Xavier Doherty, Josh Hazlewood, Glenn Maxwell, James Faulkner, Nathan Coulter-Nile, Pat Cummins

South Africa: Hashim Amla, Quinton de Kock (wk), Faf du Plessis, Rilee Rossouw, AB de Villiers (Capt.), David Miller, Robin Peterson, Vernon Philander, Dale Steyn, Kyle Abbott, Morne Morkel, Farhaan Behardien, Ryan McLaren, Wayne Parnell, Imran Tahir

Pitch and condition
Maximum of 23 degree Celsius with chance of rain. The drop-in pitches at the MCG can be good for batting.

Stats and trivia

  • South Africa have won the only ODI played against Australia at the MCG, chasing 272 in January 2009
  • Hashim Amla needs just 90 more runs to become the fastest man to reach 5000 ODI runs. Vivian Richards and Virat Kohli have done it in 114 innings, he has played 98 innings.

Match facts
Friday November 21, 2014 (day/night)
Start time 14:20 local (03:20 GMT)

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