Gibbs Hits Dutch For Six
Herschelle Gibbs bagged an international cricket first by hitting six sixes in an over, as SA inflicted a 221-run defeat on Holland.
Herschelle Gibbs bagged an international cricket first by hitting six sixes in an over, as South Africa inflicted a 221-run defeat on Holland.
Gibbs savaged Daan van Bunge to help his team charge to a South Africa World Cup record 353 for three at Warner Park, where Holland could respond with only 132 for nine in their Group A match.
The South Africa innings also contained a 15th ODI hundred for Jacques Kallis (128no), a World Cup best 21-ball half-century as Mark Boucher (75no) joined in an unbroken 134-run stand in nine overs, 67 from captain Graeme Smith – and a world record 18 sixes.
The international game's most prolific spates of hitting before Gibbs came from Sri Lanka's Sanath Jayasuriya – who has managed four sixes in an over twice – and another South African, Shaun Pollock.
Gibbs struck his maximums in the 30th over of an innings reduced after rain to 40 overs per side.
Hapless leg-spinner van Bunge was first dispatched over long-on, then long-off twice, then midwicket and once more each over long-on and long-off.
Gibbs, whose lofted drives needed only to carry a 70-yard boundary to get him up and running, began eying the record around mid-over – and when he carted a fourth six to scatter an increasingly expectant crowd, he knew he could be in business.
"It's up there with the best things I've done," he said.
"I never thought about getting six in a row – but if it's your day, it's your day.
"After the first three, I thought I was in with a chance. But I decided I wasn't going to charge him; I'd wait to see what he does – and luckily they fell into the right slot."
The blows came on a small ground, whose boundaries are just long enough to conform to international requirements – and will result in one million US dollars (Ã‚Â£513,000) being donated by sponsors Johnnie Walker to the Caribbean charity, Habitat for Humanity.
Previous instances of six sixes being hit in one over have come from Garry Sobers in a Sunday League match in 1968, and from Ravi Shastri in a first-class fixture in India.
Gibbs eventually fell trying to hit an eighth six in a 40-ball innings of 72 – and was caught at long-on by an avenging van Bunge, off Dutch captain Luuk van Troost.
Kallis' hundred – from a more studied 97 balls, containing 10 fours and just two sixes – will ultimately be largely forgotten in a match sure to be remembered almost solely for Gibbs.
His assault came after South Africa were put in to bat and found themselves a man down two balls into their innings, AB de Villiers looking to cut Billy Stelling and instead edging behind.
Smith and Kallis exercised such initial caution that there were just four runs on the board after the first five overs.
Thereafter, however, the second-wicket pair tucked in during a 114-run stand which ended with a mis-hit from Smith in the 20th over – and brought Gibbs to the crease.
The rest is already significant cricket history.
Purely for the record, Holland avoided a competition heaviest defeat thanks largely to South Africa-born Ryan ten Doeschate (57) – who reached a workmanlike half-century when he pulled Justin Kemp for his team's solitary six.
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The game was reduced to 20 overs per side by rain.