South Africa rue cheap wickets


South Africa let what seamed like a winning position slip when they slumped from 137 for 1 in the 25th over to 252 all out chasing Australia's total of 288.

With the help of an excellent 109 from David Warner Australia set South Africa a total of 289 to win.

The South African bowlers had done well to restrict Australia to 288, after it looked like a score of 310 plus was on the cards. Warner smashed 109 of 120 balls hitting eleven fours and two sixes along the way, and was ably assisted by Usman Khawaja, who hit 59 off of 71 balls, and captain Steven Smith who finished on an unbeaten 52 off 49 balls.

Imran Tahir was the pick of the South African bowlers, picking up 2 for 45 for nine overs but Kyle Abbott bowled well at the death, and Wayne Parnell was handy with his seven overs only going for 34 runs, while he grabbed the vital wicket of Warner.

South Africa lost Quinton de Kock early, but Hashim Amla and Faf du Plessis put on 105 for the second wicket before drove a full delivery from Josh Hazlewood straight at Steve Smith at short cover to leave the Proteas 140 for 2.

Amla's dismissal would see a pattern emerge, where the South African batsman would get in and then proceed to throw their wickets away. The next to go was du Plessis who slashed at a wide delivery from Mitchell Starc and was caught by George Bailey.

When AB de Villiers played around an inswinger from Hazlewood to be bowled for 39 the writing was on the wall for the Proteas. Adam Zampa removed Farhaan Behardien for four before, JP Duminy inexplicably threw his wicket away to the self same leg spinner to leave South Africa 236-6. 

As Abbott walked out into the middle, the South African tail was well and truly exposed. South Africa's last four wickets fell for just 16 runs seeing them suffer a 36 run defeat.

Amla, du Plessis and de Villiers will have to shoulder the lion's share of the blame for this defeat for the almost casual nature of their dismissals while well set.

Australia will clash with the West Indies in the next match which will take place at the same venue on June 13.