|ICC Men’s World Cup, Pune|
|South Africa 357-4 (50 overs): Van der Dussen 133 (118), De Kock 114 (116), Miller 53 (30)|
|New Zealand 167 (35.3 overs): Phillips 60 (50); Maharaj 4-46, Jansen 3-31|
|South Africa won by 190 runs|
South Africa are on the brink of clinching a World Cup semi-final berth after a 190-run thrashing of New Zealand in Pune.
Rassie van der Dussen made a superb 133 and Quinton de Kock hit his fourth century of the tournament in a 200-run stand as the Proteas posted 357-4.
New Zealand then slumped to 167 all out, with Keshav Maharaj taking 4-46.
Victory returns South Africa to the top of the table while New Zealand drop to fourth after a third straight defeat.
Stand-in New Zealand skipper Tom Latham opted to bowl after winning the toss, allowing South Africa to play to their strengths and put a big total on the board.
Temba Bavuma’s side took the same approach as they have throughout this tournament, starting steadily before accelerating rapidly late in the innings.
After Bavuma fell for 24, De Kock and Van der Dussen laid the foundations, each batting with great control and making the most of New Zealand dropping tough chances to remove them on their way to three figures.
De Kock went past 500 runs for the tournament in the process, becoming the first South Africa batter to reach that milestone at a World Cup, before he fell for 114 off 116 balls. Van der Dussen reached his century off 101 balls then kicked on brilliantly.
New Zealand’s task was made harder by a hamstring injury to seamer Matt Henry, who will have a scan on Thursday to assess the damage, allowing David Miller to smash four sixes in his 53 off 30 against a depleted attack.
Marco Jansen, who claimed 3-31, and his fellow fast bowlers did the initial damage to reduce New Zealand to 67-4 in reply, before left-arm spinner Maharaj hammered home South Africa’s dominance as the Kiwis collapsed to 110-8.
New Zealand’s only real resistance came through Glenn Phillips’ defiant half-century when the game was already lost.
South Africa’s place in the top four is now all but assured, with the Proteas batting and bowling units both impressing once again.
However, the injury-hit Black Caps find themselves in a battle to progress, just two points ahead of Pakistan and Afghanistan, with crucial matches against Pakistan and Sri Lanka to come.
Depleted Kiwis losing form at wrong time
Coming into a major tournament with injured players in the squad is always a risk but, for captain Kane Williamson and Tim Southee, New Zealand considered it a risk worth taking.
Fast bowler Southee made his return from a fractured thumb here but looked understandably rusty. Williamson made 78 on his return from a serious knee injury against Bangladesh earlier in the group stage but had to retire hurt after he also suffered a fractured thumb and has not played since.
With Henry joining Williamson, fast bowler Lockie Ferguson and batter Mark Chapman on the injury list, New Zealand could be down to just 11 fit players going into their crucial match against Pakistan on Saturday.
Four wins from four to start the competition helped mask those injury problems but three losses on the spin, albeit to the top three sides, has put the pressure on an increasingly thread-bare group, with their net run-rate also taking a significant hit in this defeat.
Losing Henry, New Zealand’s most prolific wicket-taker in one-day internationals this year, would be a big blow, especially with Ferguson, the obvious replacement, nursing an Achilles injury.
The Black Caps have shown their resilience numerous times over the years and, after a bruising defeat, a patched-up side will have to do so again to ensure a campaign that started so brightly isn’t over before the knockout stage.
‘Everything is coming together at an important time’ – reaction
South Africa wicketkeeper Quinton de Kock: “I’m feeling really good lately. It’s nice that everything is coming together at an important time for us.
“They bowled really well up front. I felt quite scratchy, I couldn’t find my rhythm. I just want to keep batting, bat for longer. My career is coming down to a finish, I’m trying to bat as much as I can.”
South Africa batter Rassie van der Dussen: “We had to work hard, when Quinny got to 50 he said it was a hard-working 50. He played brilliantly, he guided me through my options, we batted together quite nicely.
“As it got later in the innings, it was going to get better, the ball was going to get softer, luckily for us it worked out perfectly.”
New Zealand captain Tom Latham: “If we’d had those partnerships and got through those first 10 overs we’d have had a chance, with those small boundaries and a good surface. I think 330 or 340 would have been chaseable.
“We’re faced with a bit of adversity when it comes to injuries, we’ll wait and see how they come out.
“It’s important we reflect on this one quickly and go into the next game with a positive mind, you don’t become a bad team overnight.”
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Publish date : 2023-11-01 16:24:45