Woman are happy with outcome even though the result didn't go their way
MIGNON du Preez and Laura Wolvaardt represent both ends of the experience spectrum for South Africa and after coming desperately close to a maiden World Cup final, both are keen to come back and give it another crack.
The Proteas fell agonizingly short against host England, losing by two wickets with two deliveries to spare, but both Du Preez, who had made an unbeaten 76, and Wolvaardt who scored 66, played their part in a thrilling encounter.
Now 28, and a former team captain, Du Preez (pictured) was taking part in her third World Cup, and although she is one of the older campaigners in the team, the upward trajectory of the team has convinced her she has more to give.
“I’ve played for South Africa for 10 years and to finally get to a semi-final of an ODI World Cup is very special,” Du Preez told www.icc-cricket.com.
“This is my third World Cup. Unfortunately, we didn’t come out on the side we would have liked but I still think we can be proud of the whole tournament. We’ve played a brilliant brand of cricket. We had a slogan coming in – ‘Always rising’ – and I think that’s exactly what we did.
“We’ve got a lot to be proud of, even though the result didn’t go our way.
“This has excited me to come back for another one, so that we take a trophy home. It’s definitely not the end of the road, I think I’ve got a few more years to contribute to SA cricket.
“I think back home, we said coming here we wanted to leave a legacy and that’s exactly what we’ve done. We’ve shown the world that we are a force to be reckoned with and I hope a lot of girls finally had the chance to see us play and I hope young girls will be inspired to take up the sport in SA and it will be a full career option back home.”
At just 18, Wolvaardt was the youngest player in the SA squad, but despite her prodigious talent, has been weighing up the option of studying medicine.
However, after falling just short of a first World Cup final, she revealed she was keen to give it another go.
“It’s my first World Cup and I’ve just been trying to score as many runs as I can for my team. I really wanted to play well for the team,” Wolvaardt said.
“It’s definitely motivated me to stay with it more. I don’t know about my future plans yet, I still have to think about that. But I think we came so close, and just getting a taste of what could be, I’ll definitely be back for more.”