In a close game it was South Africa, for once, who kept their cool and New Zealand choked as they somehow managed to lose from a seemingly winnable position.
Hero for the Proteas was Dale Steyn whose put on a match turning performance as he returned with figures of 4/17 in his four overs. Needing 7 runs of the last over New Zealand, who were ahead for 39 overs in this match, managed to mess it up as they finished two runs short of South Africa’s total. Earlier in the day, New Zealand skipper Brendon McCullum won the toss and invited South Africa to bat.
South Africa began their innings in a horrible fashion losing 3 wickets for just 42 runs on board going at just over six runs an over. Quinton de Kock, skipper Faf du Plessis and AB de Villiers were all back in the hut with 4, 13, and 5 runs to their name respectively.
But a 55 runs partnership by Amla (41) and Duminy (86) for the fourth wicket helped the Proteas to get back on track before Amla was dismissed in unfortunate circumstances. Amla played a lovely straight drive but Corey Anderson completed an easy catch as ball bounced off Duminy’s bat, and Amla was adjudged caught and bowl. Believe me, I didn’t make this up!
However, JP Duminy unaffected by that dismissal played a scintillating knock of 86* runs off only 43 deliveries to propel South Africa to a challenging total of 6/170.
Talking about the team news Faf du Plessis made his much awaited return at the helm of the Proteas affairs, as Farhaan Behardien made way for the skipper.
New Zealand, on the other hand, made no changes to the XI that won the rain curtailed match against England two days earlier.
South Africa will be hugely relieved after this win as the Proteas went into this match with a loss against their name having lost their first match against Sri Lanka by five runs.
Brief Scores: South Africa (JP Duminy 86*, H Amla 41, CJ Anderson 2/28) beat New Zealand (R Taylor 62, K Williamson 51, Steym 4/17) by 2 runs