India bow out despite win over SA

India

India managed to beat South Africa by a single run in Colombo on Tuesday in what was a thrilling finale to the Super Eights, but with neither side in the running for the semi-finals it felt like performing a Broadway show to an empty theatre.

India managed to beat South Africa by a single run in Colombo on Tuesday in what was a thrilling finale to the Super Eights, but with neither side in the running for the semi-finals it felt like performing a Broadway show to an empty theatre.

India needed to win, as well as prevent South Africa from passing 121, in order to reach the semi-finals, so once that score was passed, the impetus dissolved and Pakistan realised they would join Australia, Sri Lanka and the West Indies in the final four.

The Proteas needed two runs to win off the final ball but they had left it too late, and Morne Morkel could not prevent his bails from being dislodged as they were all out for 151, chasing the 152 for six India had scored.

Only Faf du Plessis managed to put on a sustained knock for the Proteas, scoring 65 as they kept pace with the run rate for most of the innings, but Zaheer Khan and La Balaji had the last laugh, taking three wickets each.

Morne Morkel did a neat job early on in the India knock, sending Gautam Gambhir and Yuvraj Singh's stumps flying, while Robin Peterson bowled Virender Sehwag for 17 and Jacques Kallis got rid of danger man Virat Kohli for two.

This left Raina and Rohit Sharma with a lot to do in order to make sure they set a decent target, as they knew they needed to win by at least 31 runs to beat Pakistan's run rate. They added a partnership of 44 before Rohit was sent packing for 25.

Raina made 45 but was run out off the final ball, while skipper Dhoni went like the clappers to score 23 not out off 13 balls, taking Dale Steyn in particular to task in the 19th over as they passed the 150 mark.

South Africa's reply got off to a terrible start when Hashim Amla was caught by Sehwag off Zaheer off the second ball of the innings. Jacques Kallis followed soon after with the score on 16.

Du Plessis, in the side in place of Richard Levi, played a wonderful knock to keep the Proteas in the hunt, racing to his fifty off 29 balls while AB de Villiers joined him as they put on 49 together.

Du Plessis' knock came to an end with his score on 65, caught in the deep off Yuvraj. JP Duminy added 16 runs off 23 balls before being caught by Gambhir, as the South Africans kept relatively close to the required rate.

Robin Peterson and Farhaan Behardien were tasked with denying India their 121 target, and they passed that mark in the 17th over, and India were gutted at being knocked out after winning some good matches. At this point the Proteas needed 31 runs off 19 balls.

Both of those men fell within two balls of each other to Zaheer in the 18th over though, Behardien caught at long off and Peterson clean-bowled. This meant Albie Morkel and Johan Botha had to fire immediately and avoid a hat-trick.

The Proteas needed 14 off the final over, with Albie and Dale Steyn to face it after Botha fell to Ashwin in the previous over. Albie hit a six off the first ball off Balaji, but was clean bowled off the next ball.

Morne Morkel then came in and tried to hit the cover off the ball, and managed one six, and then it was two from one. He could not connect though and was bowled off the penultimate ball.

India: Gautam Gambhir, Virender Sehwag, Virat Kohli, Yuvraj Singh, Rohit Sharma, MS Dhoni, Suresh Raina, Irfan Pathan, R Ashwin, L Balaji, Zaheer Khan

South Africa: Hashim Amla, Jacques Kallis, AB de Villiers, JP Duminy, Faf du Plessis, Farhaan Behardien, Albie Morkel, Johan Botha, Robin Peterson, Dale Steyn, Morne Morkel

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