GROS ISLET, St Lucia, April 23, 2007 (AFP) – Heavyweight hitters Jacques Kallis and Matthew Hayden kicked off the mind games ahead of Australia and South Africa’s potentially explosive World Cup semi-final on Wednesday.
Kallis is one of four survivors from the dramatic tied semi-final against Australia at the 1999 World Cup in Birmingham, together with former captain Shaun Pollock, wicketkeeper Mark Boucher and batsman Herschelle Gibbs.
All four insist that the experience of playing in what at the time was rated the greatest one-day game of all time will have positive benefits in Wednesday’s clash at Beausejour.
But Hayden, the 2007 tournament’s most prolific runmaker with 580 to his name at an average of 82.85 as well as three centuries, is not convinced and believes that Graeme Smith’s Proteas are frightened by the defending champions.
“We gained a lot of experience in that 1999 game,” said Kallis who made 53 in that famous semi-final.
“Looking back there are a few things that we might have tried to do differently so the experience we’ve carried around for all these years will probably stand us in good stead,” added the veteran who has 480 runs in the Caribbean at an average of 96.