Cape Town: After coming up short in the first ODI of the three-match series against South Africa, England pacer Chris Woakes said that the partnership between Quinton de Kock and Temba Bavuma was the turning point of the game.
England managed to score 258/8 in their allotted fifty overs. However, the Proteas managed to chase down the total with ease as skipper de Kock (107) and Bavuma (98) put on 173 runs for the second wicket. South Africa got over the line with seven wickets in hand and 14 balls to spare.
"It was a respectable total. It wasn't, by any means, a great score. But it was something that we could bowl at. If we took wickets at important times, we could have put some pressure on them. It could have been a half-decent score," International Cricket Council (ICC) quoted Woakes as saying.
"But we weren't able to take those wickets. And that partnership between Temba Bavuma and Quinton de Kock was pretty good and hard to break, and that won them the game," he added. While chasing, de Kock, South Africa's new ODI skipper, brought up his 14th century in the format.
"He is a world-class player. Obviously, with him being the captain now, there is that side of his game where he wants to see his team over the line, which might give him that extra motivation to play even better, which is going to be tough for us, because we have to find ways to get him out," Woakes said.
England found itself at 131/6 at one stage and it boiled down to Joe Denly who ensured that the team reached a respectable score.
Denly played a knock of 87 runs to allow the visitors to reach the 250-run mark. England's big guns -- Jonny Bairstow (19), Jason Roy (32), Joe Root (17) and skipper Morgan (11) all failed to leave a mark with the bat.
England would now look to level the series in the second ODI, slated to be played on February 7 at Kingsmead in Durban.