cricket20 :: Kemp blasts South Africa to victory
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Kemp blasts South Africa to victory


Justin Kemp blasted South Africa to a six-wicket World Twenty20 victory over New Zealand in Durban which knocked England out and left India's chances hanging by a thread.

Impressive figures of 4-17 from Morne Morkel helped limit the Kiwis to 153-8 despite Craig McMillan's unbeaten 48.

But the Proteas were reeling on 45-3 and Kemp could have been given out lbw for six, but he and Mark Boucher turned the innings around with a stand of 65.

Kemp continued to club away, finishing with six sixes and 89 off 56 balls, as the hosts won with five balls to spare.

That seemed unlikely when openers Brendon McCullum (38) and Lou Vincent (32) set about Shaun Pollock and Andre Nel after New Zealand had been put into bat.

McCullum twice crashed Pollock over mid-wicket for maximums, while Nel's watch was broken as he tried to stop one of several violent straight drives from Vincent as 50 came up well inside six overs.

A double change altered the tempo of the game as McCullum and Ross Taylor edged behind trying to carve Morne Morkel away in his second over, while Vincent was bowled backing away against Johan van der Wath.

When Scott Styris mis-timed a heave off Albie Morkel to long-on, the Kiwis were on the back foot but the shrewd McMillan combined with the powerful Jacob Oram to put on 41 in four overs.

McMillan twice heaved Albie Morkel over long-on for sixes, while Oram cut for four as 21 came in the over.

Brother Morne was far more effective and bowled Oram with the first ball after being brought back, while debutant Nathan McCullum was well run out for a four-ball duck by a fine throw to the keeper from van der Wath running in from fine-leg.

Kiwi skipper Daniel Vettori pulled Van der Wath to Albie Morkel at mid-wicket and Shane Bond was caught behind first ball off Morne Morkel, who would have had a deserved five-for had he not over-stepped in yorking Mark Gillespie.

McMillan collected his fourth six, a top-edge over the keeper, in a final over yielding 11, but the New Zealand total looked short of challenging.

Especially so when Herschelle Gibbs announced his return from a hamstring injury by flicking Bond through mid-wicket and square-driving him with aplomb.

But skipper Graeme Smith and AB de Villiers did not last long, edging behind after chasing wide deliveries from the new-ball pair and Gibbs skied a pull off Chris Martin to substitute Jeetan Patel to provide another twist.

Oram then had a very strong shout for lbw against Kemp but he survived to take the sting out of the situation with Boucher.

They kept the scoreboard ticking along without producing a glut of boundaries, which meant the run rate climbed steadily.

With wickets in hand, there was no real cause for panic and the return of the expensive Martin provided them with the opportunity for the big over the home side needed.

Kemp got to his fifty off 42 balls by brutally hammering a Martin full-toss down the ground and driving a straight six, while Boucher squirted out a four on the off-side.

Vettori turned to the miserly Gillespie, who struck gold immediately by having Boucher caught behind and the equation came down to 41 off 24 balls.

That became a more favourable 22 off 18 when Kemp and Pollock - who was inexplicably dropped by Taylor at deep cover - battered Oram for maximums in an over costing 19.

Kemp was now in the zone and a mighty swipe sent Vettori a long way back over the fence at wide long-on.

He appeared to edge Bond behind with seven needed but the noise in the ground meant umpire Billy Doctrove did not hear the nick and a thrash over long-on provided the game and England with an appropriate coup de grace.

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