Rassie van der Dussen’s splendid innings of 94* off 60 balls went in vain as South Africa crashed out of the T20 World Cup 2021 despite beating England by 10 runs in Match 39 in Sharjah.
Sent into bat, Van der Dussen and Aiden Markram (52* off 25) featured in a blazing third-wicket stand of 103 as the Proteas posted 189 for 2. However, to reach the semis, South Africa needed to restrict England to 131 or less. The chasing side ended on 179 for 8 to dash Proteas’ hopes. Kagiso Rabada claimed a last-over hat-trick to give South Africa something to cheer about at the end.
England got off to a typically blazing start in the chase of 190. However, they were effectively two down for 59 by the end of the powerplay. Jason Roy retired hurt on 20 with what seemed like a leg injury. Jos Buttler, who was looking dangerous again, perished to Anrich Nortje for 26 off 15.
After easing their way to 22 in the first three overs, the England opening pair combined to smack Rabada for three fours in the fourth over. Buttler punched a length ball through covers and sent the next one to the midwicket boundary.
Roy chipped in by flicking a full and straight delivery to fine leg. However, he had to leave the field with a painful injury in the next over. Buttler followed him in the last over of the powerplay. After whacking Nortje for a six over deep midwicket, he miscued a catch to mid-off.
Left-arm spinner Tabraiz Shamsi trapped Jonny Bairstow (1) plumb in front of the stumps with a length delivery that skidded through and beat his flick. To matters worse for England, Bairstow also burned a review. Dawid Malan hit Rabada for a couple of boundaries as England reached 81 for 2 at the halfway stage and South Africa’s hopes of making the semis began to fade.
South Africa made a strange move by giving the 12th over of the innings to part-time off-spinner Markram. The move backfired as Moeen Ali clobbered him for a six and a four in an over which cost the Proteas 15. Moeen then jumped down the track and lofted Shamsi for a huge six over long-on. The left-arm spinner got his own back the very next ball as Moeen (37) holed out in the deep.
Malan hit the last of the 15th over from Dwaine Pretorius for a six over long-off. Liam Livingstone then carted the first three balls of Rabada’s next over for maximums. The second six, slammed over wide long-on, took England’s total past 131 and knocked South Africa out of the T20 World Cup 2021.
With nothing to lose, England's batters threw their bats around and brought down the equation to 14 off the last over. Rabada then claimed a hat-trick as Chris Woakes, Eoin Morgan and Chris Jordan perished trying to take on the South African pacer. In the end, the Proteas hung on for a consolation win.
Van der Dussen, Markram sizzle as South Africa post 189 for 2
Bowling first, England did reasonably well to hold South Africa to 118 of 2 at the end of the 15-over mark. With wickets in hand, though, Van der Dussen and Markram went berserk and looted 71 runs in the last five overs.
Three sixes came in the 16th over bowled by Woakes, which went for 21. Van der Dussen clubbed two length balls to long-on and deep midwicket for consecutive sixes. Markram then flicked a friendly full toss into the stands.
Three boundaries came in the next two overs as the South African pair prepared for the final assault. In the penultimate over, Markram crunched a six off Mark Wood over deep midwicket. He reached a magnificent fifty in the last over, slapping a half-volley from Jordan over long-off for another maximum.
Van der Dussen may have missed out on a hundred, but he swung the penultimate ball of the innings over long-on for another six to take South Africa closer to 190.
The Proteas did not get off to a confident start as Reeza Hendricks struggled for fluency. His misery ended on 2 off 8, following a failed attempt at a slog sweep against Moeen. Van der Dussen slammed Woakes for a four and a six in the last over of the powerplay as South Africa reached 40 for 1 after six overs.
Van der Dussen and Quinton de Kock (34) featured in a steadying partnership, rotating the strike nicely and finding the boundaries in between. The duo took the team to 73 for 1 at the halfway stage.
But just when De Kock was looking set for a big score, Adil Rashid struck. The South African opener mishit a catch to long-on, trying to take on the England leg-spinner. Van der Dussen and Markram then gave the team a much-needed lift in the end overs.
England vs South Africa: Who won Player of the Match in yesterday’s T20 World Cup 2021 match?
Van der Dussen played a high-class knock. His unbeaten 94 featured five fours and six sixes to give South Africa hope.
Markram also played a sizzling knock, scoring 52* off 25. With the ball, Shamsi again impressed, outfoxing Bairstow and Moeen.
For England, Moeen came up with a good all-round performance. He claimed the wicket of Hendricks and scored a quick 37.
Van der Dussen was named Player of the Match for his wonderful knock.
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