Aiden Markram (South Africa) Post-Match Press Conference Transcript | IND v SA | T20 World Cup
Sunday, 30 October 2022
Perth, Western Australia, Australia
Post Match Media Conference
South Africa - 137/5 (19.4), India - 133/9 (20)
Few lucky escapes. What was the key surviving on this wicket and you did that well?
AIDEN MARKRAM: Yeah, a bit of luck, like you say. We found it quite tricky. Ball's nipping around quite a bit, obviously the extra bounce as we expected. When it's nipping around as well it makes things quite tricky.
So sometimes you get the rub of the green, sometimes you don't. At the end of the day you have to be grateful when you do get a bit of luck in the game.
Can you talk us through about the target, bowling bounces with the great base and the way you guys batted? Could you talk about that (indiscernible) and the pace and the bounce which was coming, could you talk us through that?
AIDEN MARKRAM: Yeah, I mean, I think it was expected that the lengths would be sort of short of the good lengths. And the extra bounce, like I mentioned earlier, makes it quite tough.
We expected those lengths. I think the ball does get big on you and it can make for batters looking quite silly at times. But you've got to almost keep watching the ball as close as you can.
I think credit has to go to both bowling attacks today. I think both bowling attacks bowled really well today. And it certainly difficult to score out there. And they made life pretty tough for us as South African batting group.
Was it like pre-decided that you guys are going to target Ravichandran Ashwin because in the first innings (indiscernible) didn't have the best (indiscernible)?
AIDEN MARKRAM: Yes, I think naturally that's our game would sort of pan out when the seamers are all that difficult to get away. We expected them to take on Keshav. I'm sure they expected us to take on Ashwin as well, just because of the nature of the wicket, because the seamers were so difficult to get away.
So it almost got to a stage where we had to target someone because they bowled so well initially in the first, pretty much, ten overs up until the drinks break. It got to the stage where we had to pick someone. It could be anyone on any night. And sometimes you execute. Sometimes you don't.
But you pick those matchups according to who you're most comfortable against on the night. You get to different conditions and those matchups would change completely. Yeah, it was a discussion we had at the drinks break to pick one of the bowlers, commit to that. And if it comes off then it might give us a chance.
How much did the (indiscernible) attack enjoy the Perth conditions and did you find your game in Perth?
AIDEN MARKRAM: Personally I'm not too disappointed. But I think the bowlers are quite disappointed. I think they lost 12 to 18 months, they've been playing on wickets that are maybe slightly lower and slower. So I think they were extremely excited to bowl on this wicket tonight.
I think it's a lot of credit and it's not just our attack. Their attack as well goes to them because I suppose you can get onto a wicket like this and almost get carried away in terms of what lengths you hit and actually end up giving freebies. I think the bowling attacks didn't give those freebies they executed the lengths extremely well and made life very difficult for us batters.
Rohit (indiscernible) batted and we heard your captain also said that you would have batted first. What was it that they wanted to bat first but ended up with the bowlers calling the shots?
AIDEN MARKRAM: I'm not actually too sure. Toss wise, I'm not sure what would have been good to do first (indiscernible) or taken.
But just for being out there and for the better of the game I didn't feel like the pitch changed in any way. I thought it was bouncing and nipping around when we bowled and when they bowled.
It was probably a result of toss not playing that big of a role on a wicket like this. But I think, like you said, I think we also would have batted first. And it's about playing the conditions extremely well on the night which was incredibly tricky for us to do as batters.
How good were Parnell and Lungi?
AIDEN MARKRAM: Really good. I think it's important for us to set the tone. I think Wayne's been doing it now for a lot of games since he's almost joined us again. And he's got that experience and he's got that calmness of knowing how to set the tone with the bowler and according to his own personal skill sets. We've enjoyed having him back.
Lungi, in conditions like these, I think everyone would agree that he becomes a massive weapon for us. And we are grateful tonight that he executed extremely well and managed to make early breaks for us.
This is such a crucial match tonight. Puts you on top of your group. Does it feel like you've got one foot in the semifinals already?
AIDEN MARKRAM: To be honest, I'm not sure what the log looks like. It's been a bit of a, like a rush of these first few games with that first one that got washed out.
So if we are top the log, I suppose it's a good thing. But certainly not thinking with a foot in the door at the moment. We've still got a massive game against Pakistan.
And we've got Netherlands as well. And we've seen the teams that have joined the Super 12 stage can beat any team on their day. So there's still a lot of cricket to be played for us. And it's pretty much about trying to get better game by game. We give ourselves the best chance to qualify if we do.
Aiden, four of the top six Indian batsmen got up playing the(indiscernible). Taking a shot with them. Were you surprised they all went for the shots?
AIDEN MARKRAM: Look, I think on a wicket like this, you're going to end up playing more as a result of bad shots than on other wickets just because of the nature of the bounce. It's a tough shot to play when there's extra bounce.
But ultimately, if a team keeps bashing at that length, in T20 cricket, you as a batter also need to make a play. That's probably the reasons that both teams took the short balls on tonight because if you don't, you're unfortunately not going to score at a rate that's quick enough.
It was a plod for us to hit hard lengths, try to expect the extra bounce. And I'm sure it was the same for the Indian attack. It all comes down to conditions on the mat.
Take you back a while ago. You were, out of four men, took a time away from the game and the team. Now you're back up and running with confidence. But for Temba, do you have any advice on how you can deal with this unfortunate run of low form? Or was it just a matter of support and help you take on which could be risky, especially leading to the playoffs?
AIDEN MARKRAM: I think every player goes through these sort of form slumps. With games that are so close to each other, it can seem a lot worse than what it is. But I think the whole team, management involved, have been there for Temba. And our ideas don't change about his ability. We all know his ability and our team and the role that he plays, not just from batting, but also from a leadership point of view as well.
His leadership in my opinion has been excellent. On-field decisions have been really good that he's making. So I've got no doubt he'll come right with the bat. And, yeah, if he does, and we can get off to some good starts, I think it's going to help our batting unit a lot, but certainly not doubting his ability at all.
I think the whole team, and I can speak on behalf of the team as, we all support him. It happens to everyone. We've all been through it. I've been through it more than once, unfortunately. It's always just one knock away, and that's sort of the message that Temba has been given for the time being.
In terms of the bowling unit all being in form, also by the captain, how much freedom does it give you guys to go out there and play and experience yourself, take on the bowling when everybody is playing that well?
AIDEN MARKRAM: Yeah, it is. It definitely does help. In a format like this you have to take risks and have to play a positive brand of cricket, and it certainly helps when your batters seem to be in form. Did not feel like I was far from being in form. But I suppose you get wickets like that, and it's just about finding way, I guess.
So, yeah, it does definitely help. It does free us up a bit. And hopefully all the batters can take on from that going forward.