An unbeaten 66 from Jacques Kallis guided South Africa to a rain-affected seven-wicket win over Ireland in Guyana.
Jacques Kallis survived two chances to score his 61st one-day international half-century and steer South Africa to a seven-wicket win over Ireland in their World Cup Super Eight match at Providence Stadium in Guyana.
Three rain interruptions reduced the game to 35 overs apiece, between which the South African bowlers – led by Shaun Pollock, Andrew Hall and Charl Langeveldt – limited Ireland to 152 for eight.
Man of the match Kallis (66 not out) then shared two vital partnerships, the first with captain Graeme Smith (41) and the other with Ashwell Prince (47no), to see his team to victory with 21 balls to spare.
South Africa needed to score 160 to win from their 35 overs on the Duckworth-Lewis system.
Kallis and Smith put them on the path to victory with a run-a-ball second-wicket stand of 70 after lanky seamer Boyd Rankin had raised Irish hopes by capturing the wicket of opener AB de Villiers with the third ball of the innings.
The experienced pair regained the initiative for the Proteas, bringing up their 50 partnership off just 48 balls and took the score to 71 in the 13th over before Smith's 45-ball innings ended.
The South African captain hit six fours before his opposite number Trent Johnston took a brilliant return catch to end his innings.
The 6ft 7in Rankin struck again when he had Herschelle Gibbs (six) caught at midwicket by Andrew White with the score on 85 but Kallis found a reliable partner in Prince and together they took their team to victory, adding an unbroken 80 for the fourth wicket.
Rankin missed a caught-and-bowled chance when Kallis was 40 and five runs later Johnston missed a difficult effort at short fine-leg from Kyle McCallan's offspin.
The pair brought up the South African 100 in the 21st over and soon after Kallis reached his 50 from 61 balls. It included eight fours.
It was Kallis' second consecutive half-century following his score of 86 in his team's thrilling one-wicket win over Sri Lanka.
He faced a total of 86 balls and struck eight fours in his stay at the crease. Prince faced 47 balls and struck three fours in his innings, ending the match with a six over long-on.
Rankin claimed two for 26 from his seven overs and was Ireland's best bowler by a distance.
The Irish were put in to bat after Smith won the toss and they lost wickets regularly, failing to put together a partnership of substance.
Pollock bowled a miserly seven overs, claiming two for 17, while Langeveldt picked up three for 41 and Andrew Hall two for 37 as the South African bowlers exploited the overcast conditions.
Jeremy Bray was trapped lbw by Pollock in the third over and the same bowler had Porterfield (14) caught by Kallis as Ireland lost their first two wickets for 31 in the 13th over.
Morgan (28) and O Brien (25) added 32 for the third wicket before Morgan's 50-ball innings ended when he was caught by Prince off Hall's bowling with the score on 63 having struck four fours.
Langeveldt then removed O'Brien to reduce Ireland to 77 for four in the 23rd over before Andre Botha (14) and White shared Ireland's best partnership, adding 49 for the fifth wicket before both fell in quick succession.
White hit a run-a-ball 30 before he was caught by Gibbs off Smith with the score on 116 and Botha went three runs later, caught by De Villiers off Hall.
Langeveldt then removed Kyle McCallan (three) and Paul Mooney with successive deliveries as Ireland plunged to 124 -for eight in the 32nd over.
But Johnston (13) and Dave Langford-Smith (17) added 28 off the last 20 balls to see Ireland to their final score.
South Africa, who have won both their Super Eight matches, now have four points and play Bangladesh on Saturday, while Ireland, still without a point, face New Zealand on Monday – both in Guyana.
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