ICC Twenty20 World Cup | South Africa proves too strong for West Indies

South Africa's Aiden Markram plays a shot during the ICC Twenty20 World Cup 2021 match against West Indies in Dubai on October 26, 2021.   | Photo Credit: Getty Images

Defending champion West Indies suffered its second successive defeat at the ICC Twenty20 World Cup as its bowlers failed to defend 143 in a Super 12 match against South Africa here on Tuesday. South Africa won with eight wickets and 10 balls to spare.

South Africa lost captain Temba Bavuma to a run-out in the first over of the run chase. Reeza Hendricks — opening in Quinton de Kock’s absence — and Rassie van der Dussen then added 57 for the second wicket before Shimron Hetmyer’s diving catch at deep square removed Hendricks.

But that didn’t deter Aiden Markram, who hit an unbeaten 51 off just 26 balls with two boundaries and four sixes, to not only deny West Indies a whiff of a comeback but also become his team’s highest run-scorer in men’s T20Is in 2021. Van der Dussen finished unbeaten on 43.

Earlier, South Africa chose to field. Off-spinner Markram and Kagiso Rabada shared the new ball and kept the West Indies openers quiet before Evin Lewis finally broke the shackles in the fourth over.

Big hits

He clubbed Rabada for a four and a six before hammering two more sixes and a four off Markram in the next over. Markram, who had gone for only four in his first two, conceded 18 in his third over.

At the other end, Lendl Simmons, struggling to get going, was dropped on four by stand-in wicketkeeper Heinrich Klaasen off Anrich Nortje.

Meanwhile, Lewis didn’t let the tempo drop, slog sweeping Tabraiz Shamsi over deep-square to bring up his 50 off 32 balls as West Indies got to 65 without loss at the halfway mark.

But with Simmons unable to find gaps or go aerial, the pressure to keep up the scoring rate got to Lewis, who holed out to Rabada on the deep midwicket rope for a 35-ball 56.

Nicholas Pooran, sent in at No. 3, was caught at long-off cheaply. Simmons followed suit when he was put out of his misery by a slower ball from Rabada that crashed into his stumps.

Gayle falls

West Indies was 95 for three in 15 overs when Chris Gayle — batting at No. 4 for the first time in T20Is — and Kieron Pollard took 16 off Shamsi’s third over; both hitting a six each. But Gayle was caught behind before he could inflict more damage.

Pollard fell for a 20-ball 26, picking up van der Dussen at a very straight mid-off. Nortje and Pretorius then mixed up their pace to finish with four wickets for 12 runs in the last two overs.

In the end, West Indies was left to rue the handy runs it left behind on the field.

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Printable version | Nov 30, 2021 10:04:47 AM |

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