Steyn and Morkel lead South Africa to victory
Dale Steyn and Morne Morkel produced a terrific bowling display to help South Africa cruise to a 13 run victory over New Zealand to get their Super Eight campaign off to a winning start.
Having won the toss and batted first Albie Morkel (40) and AB de Villiers (47) hit a quick fire partnership of 72 as they helped South Africa reach 170-4 to set New Zealand a tough run chase after they had been restricted by the Kiwis earlier in their innings
The pair came together in the 13th over and proceeded to attack the New Zealand bowlers dispatching 7 sixes including 3 off the bowling of Tim Southee in the penultimate over as the Proteas enjoyed a good end to the game.
Faced with such a big total the Kiwis got of to a shaky losing big hitting opener Brendon McCullum (6) from the 5th ball of Karl Langeveldt’s first over. Having just hit a boundary from the previous delivery McCullum attempted another cover drive but was caught by Herschelle Gibbs who pulled off a spectacular catch.
Martin Guptill came to the crease to face the final delivery of Langeveldt’s first over and he should have been caught by Johan Botha in the slips but the spinner put down an easy chance to double the Proteas advantage.
Having survived his first ball Guptill built a partnership of 44 with opener Jesse Ryder as the Kiwis looked to regain some ground after a slow start.
The pair faced 40 balls finding the boundary on five occasions as they struggled against the pace of Dale Steyn and Langeveldt.
Despite scoring 18 runs Guptill never looked settled at the crease and his innings came to an end in the 7th over after he was caught by Albie Morkel out on the boundary to give Botha a wicket in his first over.
Ryder (33) followed 13 balls later as the Kiwis suffered a major set back losing their big hitting opener after he was caught by AB de Villiers to leave the Kiwis 67-3.
Ross Taylor was joined at the crease by Scott Styris with the pair needing to replicate Morkel and de Villiers partnership of 72 in the first innings which put the Proteas on top after they had been reduced to 97-3.
In a similar situation the pair couldn’t produce reproduce their own game changing partnership as Taylor (19) was brilliantly caught by Gibbs to reduce the Kiwis to 87-4 after Morne Morkel struck to pick up his first wicket.
Styris and Jacob Oram soon followed as the Kiwis innings started to fall apart as South Africa increased the pressure as they took two quick wickets to leave the Kiwis 110-6.
Gareth Hopkins tried to readdress the balance scoring a quick fire 18 but he was soon dismissed by Morkel as the Kiwis innings was now in free fall as another wicket fell to reduce them to 123-7.
Daniel Vettori and Nathan McCullum saw out the last few overs as South Africa sealed an impressive victory over an under performing New Zealand.
Having won the toss Graeme Smith decided to bat first; the Proteas skipper got off to a good start alongside Jacques Kallis as the pair built an opening partnership of 40 runs.
They signalled their intentions for the game when Kallis dispatched Shane Bond for a massive six over the wicket keeper head at the start of the second over.
In the opening stages of the power play overs the pair attacked the Kiwi bowlers as the runs flowed easily for Smith and Kallis which allowed the partnership to blossom.
The partnership had reached 40 before the Kiwis managed to break through. Having just Tim Southee for a boundary Smith (14) tried to repeat the shot but he could only pick out Martin Guptill at deep midwicket he took the easy catch.
With Smith gone Kallis was joined at the crease by Herschelle Gibbs who had been brought back into the team to replace Loots Bosman who had suffered a disappointing start to the tournament with the bat.
Their partnership only lasted 18 balls and contributed 15 runs before Kallis was caught by Southee out on the boundary who pulled off a stunning diving catch to dismiss the big hitting opener.
Kallis (31) tried to upper cut a short ball bowled by Jacob Oram but he could only manage a top edge which sailed out to Southee to give the Kiwi’s a big break through reducing South Africa to 55-2.
Gibbs was joined at the crease by AB de Villiers and the pair struggled as the Kiwis took all the pace of the ball with Daniel Vettori and Nathan McCullum slowing the run rate down to just over 6.2 an over.
The partnership was going along at just under a run a ball before Gibbs tried to up the pace, he started by smashing McCullum for a huge six but the spinner struck back from the next ball to dismiss Gibbs (30) who was caught by Brendon McCullum out at deep square leg to leave the Proteas 97-3 after 13.3 overs.
The lose of Gibbs brought Morkel to the crease and alongside de Villiers the pair looked to take the game away from the Kiwis with a display of big hitting.