Thursday, June 20, 2019, sees Australia take on Bangladesh at Trent Bridge. The Aussies are third and a win will take them to the top but Bangladesh have a chance to show their excellent form. That surely won't be an easy game for the Aussies. Do tune in at 10.30 am local (0930 GMT) for all the action from game 26. ADIOS! TAKE CARE!
Numero uno, go New Zealand! 9 points from 5 games. Does that take one foot of theirs into the semi-finals? They might like to feel so, with West Indies and Pakistan next. As far as South Africa are concerned, they have Pakistan, Sri Lanka and Australia next. The maximum they can reach is 9 points and they will hope that other teams at the top lose more games.
Victorious New Zealand captain, Kane Williamson, says that in the morning, the wicket was a bit soft, hence bowling first was a better option. Adds that it did look a belter and the bowlers had to adjust, which they did beautifully. On not giving Jimmy Neesham the ball in this game, Williamson says that in this case, de Grandhomme and Santner were bowling well, hence he did not feel the need to go to Jimmy. On Colin de Grandhomme's approach to batting, Williamson says that they just had a chat and from there on, Colin took it on his own. Praises de Grandhomme for playing the blinder, which Kane believes, took the game away from South Africa. Agrees that the Kiwis have done well, playing on a variety of pitches but is quick to admit that there are a few tough games coming their way and the team needs to be prepared to apply itself.
South African skipper, Faf du Plessis, says that the Proteas were aiming for 260 which would have been a great score on this wicket. Which means, he reckons, there were 20 short. Praises Williamson for showing how to bat on this wicket, by seeing off the good bowlers and targetting that one weak bowler and adds that a century in such games on such pitches make the difference. On South Africa's fielding, Faf says that the fielders and bowlers gave it their all but Kane Williamson was too good on the day. On Williamson's catch not being reviewed, du Plessis says that he was standing at long on and since there was no real appeal from either of Tahir or de Kock, they did not review. Admits that the performances have not been there from the individuals in this World Cup but the team is still fighting and stresses that it shall continue.
KANE WILLIAMSON HAS BEEN NAMED THE MAN OF THE MATCH. Says that it is nice to be there at the end. Adds that the surface was a tough one to bat upon, with it holding a bit. Praises his bowlers for bowling well upfront. Also credits South Africa for bowling well. On his batting, Kane stays that he just focuses on keeping out the tough balls, communicating with his partners, like if the other is playing well, then he can settle down, like it happened with Neesham and de Grandhomme. Does not want to take shine on his own performance and adds that there were plenty of other contributions which were vital in close games like these.
Tough to fault the bowlers of South Africa. They created the chances but their fielders did not support them. Chris Morris picked up 3 wickets but crucially, Imran Tahir was wicketless while Rabada and Ngidi got just one each. There was where the Kiwis played the match perfectly, seeing off the best bowler in the opposition, without giving him any wicket. Here comes the presentation...
Classic batting by Kane Williamson. On a pitch where everyone struggled, he shone brightly. There was nothing much from other batsmen - 35 from Guptill and just a 23 from Neesham. But that 60 from Colin de Grandhomme proved to be vital and their 91-run stand paved the way for the win. Williamson stood like a rock, absorbing all the pressure and being there till the end. He was the pivot in all the stands after Munro got out, ensuring that the Kiwis get home.
A day to forget for South Africa. They struggled on a sluggish pitch and mustered a half-decent score. It could have been more than decent, had their fielders taken those chances. Plenty of catches were put down, run outs were missed and misfields were done. A shoddy effort and in reality, they choked. And to sum up the entire situation, there was a moment when Kane Williamson nicked one behind in the 38th over, to de Kock, off Tahir. But no one appealed. There was a big spike shown on Ultra Edge. The skipper was on 76 then.
Kane Stuart Williamson. Take a bow. The pressure is on you, your players and your opposition. But you stand cool as a cucumber, spraying ice showers and taking your team home. In sublime fashion. Simply superb.
48.3 overs (4 Runs) FOUR! NZ WIN BY 4 WICKETS! And possibly, possibly, have knocked South Africa out of the competition as well. On a length outside off, Williamson goes back in his crease and guides it behind point. The fielder dives to his left but the ball goes through! Time for the handshakes then!
48.1 overs (1 Run) A short ball, around middle, pulled powerfully but straight to deep mid-wicket. Just a single. 7 needed from 5.
Last over of the match. 8 needed to win. 7 for a tie. No Super Over here. The teams share points if this is a tie. Andile Phehlukwayo to bowl. 8-0-62-1 so far. Faf du Plessis has a long chat with him. Substitute Duminy comes in to join the conversation. Umpire Ian Gould asks the Proteas to hurry up. About time. Even a normal 100-over game does not last this long. Okay. Lungi Ngidi returns to the field after a possible bathroom break. Duminy goes back. Tahir is into the ears of Phehlukwayo. Third man is up. So is fine leg. Deep backward square leg, deep mid-wicket, long on and long off are the men at the ropes. Finally, the first ball of the final over...
47.6 overs (4 Runs) FOUR! He goes to get the maximum out of it but in a smart way. This is just class. The third man is up and Williamson shows composure as he just guides this length ball outside off, wide of the fielder at short third man. It goes past him for a boundary. Believe me this man, Kane Williamson is ice and he's got nerves of steel.
47.5 overs (1 Run) Good length ball on off, Santner hits it straight as an arrow. Ngidi does the split but the ball does not hit his feet. It hits the stumps at the bowler's end and goes towards long off. Single taken. Will Williamson go for the single or try to get the maximum out of it?
47.4 overs (0 Run) Once again an off cutter. It is outside off, Santner looks to play it through cover but misses. 13 needed off the last 8 balls.
47.3 overs (1 Run) Slow again. It is on middle and off, Williamson comes down the track and chips it towards long on. Only a single taken. New man Santner will face the first ball of his innings now.
47.2 overs (0 Run) IN THE AIR...AND JUST SHORT. Slower delivery on middle, Williamson ends up chipping it back towards the bowler. Ngidi dives in front but it falls agonizingly short of him.
Mitchell Santner walks out to bat now. 14 needed off 11 balls now. He will be at the non striker's end.
47.1 overs (0 Run) OUT! Is the match turning in South Africa's favour here? Ngidi smartly takes the pace off the ball. He bowls it full, de Grandhomme looks to clear long off but he gets out foxed by the change of pace and ends up hitting it to the man there. Faf du Plessis there comes ahead and takes a good catch sliding forward. First wicket of the game for Ngidi and it has come at a critical juncture here.
46.6 overs (1 Run) Single to end the over. Good length ball outside off, de Grandhomme taps it towards point and takes a single. 14 needed off the last 2 overs.
46.5 overs (0 Run) Good smart thinking this. Faf keeps a short third man. Length ball outside off, de Grandhomme looks to run it down to third man but it goes to short third man and no run allowed.
46.4 overs (1 Run) Outside off on a length, Kane runs it down to third man for one.
46.3 overs (0 Run) Rabada hits the length hard on middle, Williamson taps it to point and shouts a loud no to his partner.
46.2 overs (0 Run) Good length ball outside off, Williamson looks to flick it on the leg side but misses and the ball hits his elbow and then rolls back off his pad.
46.1 overs (1 Run) Good length ball outside off, de Grandhomme punches it towards cover for a single.
Kagiso Rabada to bowl the 47th over of the game. A very crucial over this.
45.6 overs (1 Run) Flicks it through mid-wicket for a run.
45.6 overs (1 Run) WIDE. Well outside off, left alone.
45.5 overs (4 Runs) FOUR! A bit short and slightly outside off, Colin de Grandhomme goes for a pull but doesn't time it well. David Miller runs to his right from deep mid-wicket but the ball falls a bit short in front of him. Kagiso Rabada, the back up fielder from square leg, also dives to his left but fails to save the boundary! Poor from SA.
45.4 overs (0 Run) This one was a fuller one outside off, Colin goes for a wild swing but misses it, the ball stays a bit low and ends up in the hands of de Kock.
45.3 overs (1 Run) Full and outside off, driven through the covers for one.
45.2 overs (1 Run) Slower one onto the leg, batsman flicks this one towards square leg for a single.
45.1 overs (1 Run) Full and outside off, Williamson goes for the slog but ends up mistiming it. The ball goes in the air but lands safely near the mid-wicket region.