“Hopefully, I am better than you”- South African U19 sensation Kwena Maphaka’s message to Jasprit Bumrah


Young South African speedster Kwena Maphaka made headlines after a sensational win for the hosts against West Indies in the second game of the U19 World Cup 2024 at Potchefstroom on Friday, January 19.

Producing sensational figures of 5/38, Maphaka was deservingly adjudged the Player of the Match. The way he celebrated his wickets went viral as it resembled the way star Indian speedster Jasprit Bumrah would celebrate sometimes, the typical ‘I don’t know’ way with his hands out wide.

Speaking in a video on ICC’s Instagram page after South Africa’s win, Kwena Maphaka explained how he decided that he would unleash the ‘I don’t know’ celebration. He said:

“I actually asked my brother for a celebration to give me just before the World Cup. And he just said ‘I have no clue. I don’t know’. I said, ‘You know what, that sounds good. Let me go with the “I don’t know” celebration.'”

Maphaka also had a message for Jasprit Bumrah, which just showed how confident the left-arm pacer was. He added:

“Jasprit you’re a great bowler. Hopefully, I am better than you.”

Chasing a target of 286, West Indies in reply were bundled out for 254 with as many as 9.5 overs remaining. It just went on to show how crucial and timely Maphaka’s breakthroughs were.

Kwena Maphaka opened up on his performance

What stood out from Kwena Maphaka’s performance was the way he rose to the occasion just when South Africa needed a breakthrough. From 225/7, Jewel Andre and Nathan Edwards had stitched a crucial partnership of 25 runs for the eighth wicket.

South Africa needed an inspiration and that’s when Maphaka came back into the attack and picked up two of the remaining three wickets. Here’s what the left-arm pacer had to say about his performance:

“It’s definitely a great way to get the World Cup started off. We knew we had it in us. We were just waiting for that performance. I am happy it could come out today and hopefully a few more.”

It was perhaps fitting that Kwena Maphaka picked up the final wicket of the game, trapping Isai Thorne right in front. South Africa will play their next game in the U19 World Cup against England at the same venue on Tuesday, January 23.

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