Cricket World Cup 2023: Australia v South Africa live scores, stream, teams, start time

Australia was calling on the local knowledge of cricket great Andy Flower as it braces for a vastly different wicket in Lucknow to the one it confronted at Chennai on Sunday.

Former Zimbabwe captain and England coach Flower has been spending time working with the Aussies on and off in recent months, consulting ahead of the World Test Championship final and during the Ashes.

He is back with the side for a period during the World Cup, and was on the field in a meeting with captain Pat Cummins, coach Andrew McDonald and selection chair George Bailey, 24 hours out from Australia’s match against South Africa at the Ekana Stadium.

Flower knows this venue better than most. He coached the Indian Premier League’s Lucknow Super Giants across the past two seasons before being replaced by ex-Australian coach Justin Langer.

Australia struggled on a slow turner at Chepauk in its six-wicket loss to India on Sunday, but Cummins said on Wednesday that the pitch at Lucknow – which hosts Australia’s next two matches against the Proteas and South Africa – appeared a different proposition.

“It’s a beautiful stadium. I thought I had been here but I don’t think I have but (it’s a) beautiful ground. The wicket looks really good. I haven’t had a look at it today. But last night looked really good. Really even so maybe a bit of pace and bounce. Yeah, so we’ll see how it is tomorrow,” Cummins said.

“When it’s a good wicket, which that looks like, most of the games have been 300 plus.”

While India’s spinners ran through the Aussies on Sunday afternoon, Australia’s tweaker twins Adam Zampa and Glenn Maxwell did not have anywhere near the same success under lights, struggling to control the ball because of dew.

It called into question Cummins’ decision to bat first on Sunday, but he said the India experience would not necessarily sway the strategy this time around.

“I think it’s different at every venue. So you know here it’s whatever a few thousand kilometres away from Chennai it’s a bit different,” Cummins said.

“Probably have another look tonight, see if there’s dew but it doesn’t seem like there’s as much dew at this ground. But yeah, I don’t really have a strong opinion on the dew in one-day cricket. Some games the ball gets heavy and it’s actually better to bowl at night and other games it gets so slippery that it’s hard to grip onto so it’s kind of a bit different to T20.”

Cummins reiterated that all-rounder Marcus Stoinis, who also plays in the IPL for Lucknow, was available for the match after missing the defeat to India following a hamstring complaint. But Cummins said the Aussies would confirm their XI at the toss.

Originally published as Cricket World Cup 2023: Live coverage, scores of Australia v South Africa clash

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