South Africaâ€™s Quinton de Kock has rated 2019 Indian Premier League (IPL) final as the most emotional moment of his career. He played for Mumbai Indians in the 2019 IPL which saw Chennai Super Kings and his own team clash for the title.
As South Africa gears up to meet New Zealand in the group stage match of the ICC Cricket World Cup 2019, the spotlight is on the two teams, which played a hard-fought match in the 2015-edition of the World Cup at Eden Park in Auckland.
In a pre-match press conference held on Tuesday, de Kock rated the 2015-semifinal between the two teams as the second most emotional moment for him after the IPL final.
â€śObviously the IPL final this year was up there. But Eden Park, Auckland, it was pretty intense. I experienced it for the first time ever, that vibe that was going through the stadium. It was so noisy and I was just trying to concentrate, but it was tough to deal with it,â€ť he said.
Adding that Wednesdayâ€™s match hopefully draws a good crowd, de Kock also said that he hopes to spot some South African supporters among the crowd as well.
The semifinal between the two teams in the 2015-edition was a close match which went right down to the wire. In the match reduced to 43 overs per side, New Zealand beat the Proteas by 4 wickets with one ball remaining.
While Faf du Plessis (82) and AB de Villiers (65 not out) starred with the bat for the South Africans, Grant Elliot (84 not out), Brendon McCullum (59) and Corey Anderson (58) helped New Zealand to scrape through.
Wednesdayâ€™s match is crucial for the Proteas whose performance in the five matches in this edition so far has been below par. With three defeats, one win and one match washed out due to rain, their hopes hang in the balance.
The Kiwis meanwhile continue to remain in the top four of the points table with three wins out of the four matches they have played.