It's emotional down here, we're in final: Steyn, Smith laud SA for T20 WC final entry

The South African government too congratulated the team for achieving a historic feat.
South Africa's Reeza Hendricks, left, and teammate Aiden Markram celebrate after defeating Afghanistan in their men's T20 World Cup semifinal cricket match on June 26, 2024.
South Africa's Reeza Hendricks, left, and teammate Aiden Markram celebrate after defeating Afghanistan in their men's T20 World Cup semifinal cricket match on June 26, 2024.(Photo | PTI)

JOHANNESBURG: Graeme Smith and Dale Steyn are all too familiar with the heartbreak of being a South African in ICC events, and as the Proteas broke the jinx by entering their maiden T20 World Cup final, both men felt emotionally overwhelmed.

South Africa handed a nine-wicket thrashing to Afghanistan in the semifinals in Tarouba, Trinidad to make the final after seven semifinal disappointments of the past.

"We are in the finals. Couldn't be happier for @AidzMarkaram and the team, one more to go," wrote former skipper Smith on his X account, tagging current captain Aiden Markram.

Steyn, the premier fast bowler of his time, was as delighted to see his country in the showpiece's final, and lauded the pace bowlers for producing a brilliant effort to bowl out the Afghans for a feeble 56.

"It's emotional down here. We're into a final. Proteas with the bit between their teeth! "It's been destructive poetry in motion. Beautiful to watch," Steyn scribbled on his X handle.

The South African government too congratulated the team for achieving a historic feat.

"Congratulations @ProteasMenCSA on reaching the finals in the T20 World Cup for the first time beating Afghanistan by 9 wickets."

The Afghanistan Cricket Board (ACB) also lauded the rivals for reaching the title clash, even though they were crestfallen by the result in the semifinals.

"Not exactly the ending we hoped for in this T20 World Cup. But hats off to #AfghanAtalan for an unforgettable performance throughout the event.

"Congratulations to @ProteasMenCSA for securing their first-ever final berth in World Cup cricket."

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