South Africa defeat England, makes it into Semi’s
The official broadcasters of the T20 world cup had been publicizing the tagline “How one over that will change the game “. As the script unfolded in Chittagong last night, a mere 6 balls of the 18 over of the innings, was all it was required to swing the fortunes in the favor of the “Proteas”.
The wrecker-in-chief was none other than arguably the best batsman in T20 cricket at present AB De Villiers who hammered a hapless Jade Dernbach all over the park and consequently made the target a lot more than it looked for the majority of the innings.
Dernbach is a bowler whose frequent debacles with the bowl have long been overlooked by the ECB for this ability to win matches .Perhaps after the show last night, if the board has any sense of meritocracy left surely he has bowled his last balls in international cricket.
England began the day as the lady luck finally shined on them as they won the toss and opted to ball first. This has become the trend as the heavy dew factor has time and again come into play in this tournament. England skipper Stuart Broad pre match claims that it was time ‘Mother Cricket’ owned them a few favors was put rest after umpire Rod Tucker’s shocking decision to rule a no ball which reprieved last match centurion Alex Hales when he was caught at Point.
Earlier in the day, despite being forced to start their innings three times over due to the recurring floodlights failures, Hashim Amla and Quinton De Kock managed to put up a partnership of 90 runs for the first wicket . Amla was finally out of Broad but not before he reached his maiden half century in T20 internationals.
The England players were sloppy in the field; they were leaking runs, dropping catches, missing regulation stumping chances thus they are only themselves to blame for the disappointing result they got in the end .
De Villiers was the man of the moment, the stand in skipper in place of suspended regular Faf Du Plessis took the responsibility on his hands and delivered on all fronts, smashing an astonishing 69 of just 28 balls which comprised of lusty hitting as well as innovative shots being showcased at will. It was majorly his efforts that made the final score reach 196 and ensured that the English batsmen start their innings with the asking rate near about 10.
In reply, England got off to a flying start courtesy Alex Hales and MIcheal Lumb, It was finally in the 8th over when the downslide began when Wayne Parnell got Hales out slicing it straight to David Miller.Hales raised his eyes to the heaven as he walked back and surely he knew that was a turning point as next ball Moin Ali got a thin edge to De kock .
Eoin Morgan and Ian Butler tried to steady the ship, but with the required rate climbing over to 12, something had to give, Morgan went for leggie Imran Tahir had perished in the attempts. Buttler briefly threatened while Ravi Bopara did at least manage to take the game into the final over with a breezy but inconsequential 31.
Ever if any team requires 22 runs of the final over, they would never wish to face Dale Steyn. After his last match heroics, South Africa sensed that the match was in the bag. Needing 20 off the final 3 deliveries a frustrated Tim Bresnan finally made some contact hitting it consequently over for 6, 4 and a 6 and finally losing it by just 3 runs.
The South African’s were phenomenal in the field and that probably made the difference. Having qualified for the Semis now, the team cannot drop their guard now as their ‘choking’ credentials will certainly come to haunt them if they fail to be right up their mark.
Meanwhile all England team can do now is play for pride against Netherlands in their final match and return back to the British soil with the warm memories of their triumph over Sri Lanka.
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