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Quinton de Kock is in contention to lead South Africa at next year's ICC Men's T20 World Cup

Batting might in focus as South Africa, England scrap for series

SA v Eng, 3rd T20I, preview

After two high-scoring encounters that both ended in narrow margins, another potential thriller could be in store in the decider.

Overview

South Africa v England
3rd T20I
SuperSport Park, Centurion
Sunday, 16 February; 02.30pm local, 12.30pm GMT

In a neck-and-neck series, both teams have traded jabs with each other, setting up what could potentially be a cracking decider at Centurion’s SuperSport Park. South Africa won the first T20I by one run, England returned the favour by winning the second by two runs.

With so little separating the two sides, making predictions is a pointless game. But if the series so far is any indication, the only thing that can be said with certainty is that this will once again be a test of batting might.

That’s not to say that the bowlers are a complete non-entity. As many as 31 wickets have fallen in the two games, which amounts to an average of nearly eight wickets per innings. But with both teams possessing an imperious middle order, this comes down to a battle of who can outdo whom.

What happened last time

Jason Roy and Jonny Bairstow set the early tone, before Ben Stokes built on the foundation in the middle overs and Moeen Ali went berserk to lay the finishing touches on a gargantuan total of 204. Quinton de Kock, who blitzed a 22-ball 65, first, and Rassie van der Dussen later, kept South Africa on course for the most part, but Tom Curran bounced back from conceding a six and a four to defend 15 in the final over and hand England the victory.

Conditions

Centurion will be bright, sunny and pleasant. South Africa defended 180 against Sri Lanka in the last T20I at this venue, but on current form, either team could have a lot more to defend.

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