West Indies maintained their un-beaten record in World T20 2016 when they beat South Africa in yet another thrilling encounter at Nagpur on Friday. A late six from Brathwaite saw the Windies take away the victory and a place in the semi-final leaving the Proteas to depend on the results of the other games for their place in the next round of the tournament.
South Africa were put into bat on a hard pitch to play strokes on and they crumpled to a score of 126, which was just a few less on the night as Samuels and Charles saw the Caribbean outfit into the semi-finals. Here are 5 turning points from this game:
- 3 in 3 for the Windies:
South Africa were coming into this game after playing games at Wankhede, a batting paradise. They found it hard to adjust to the grass and dryness of the pitch as they tried too hard too early and were dented. They wanted to be expressive but lost 3 wickets in the first three overs leaving the team at 20-3. They managed just 39 runs in the power-play and were not really able to change gears in their innings.
- Wiese and Q de Kock give the Proteas something to play for:
South Africa were later reduced to 47-5 in less than 9 overs and were looking like they had no chance in this game but David Wiese and Q de Kock had other ideas. They kept their head down, played sensibly and put on 50 runs in just 7.2 overs. This was also the highest partnership in this low scoring game, stressing the importance of this knock for SA to have any hope in the second innings.
- Marlon Samuels plays a responsible knock:
After a slow start, West Indies were pegged back by fall of wickets in regular intervals but chasing a target of less than 130 saw the required run rate stay at a manageable number. However a couple of good overs and Charles wicket saw the run rate required reach 7 rpo. However, Samuels had the target covered and played a superb knock including an over where he took Rabada to 14 runs, an over that changed the complexion of the run chase. It bought the required run rate down below 6 for the first time in the game.
- Samuels throws it away:
After the superb knock, Samuels, who just picked up a boundary in the penultimate over of the game taking the required number of runs close to single digits, he played a rash shot as he looked to finish off the game and perished. This left the number 8 and number 9 batsmen on the crease with the Windies still needing 10 from 7 balls. To have scored 44 runs of 44 balls in a low scoring game and not have stayed till the end was criminal from Samuels.
- Brathwaite launches into Rabada:
With just 9 runs needed of the final over, both teams were closely matched and Rabada started superbly with a dot ball. However, Brathwaite had no hesitation in swinging at the next one and boy did he connect. In such a pressure situation, Brathwaite kept his cool, met the ball from the middle of the bat and sent it flying high and long into the stands ending South Africa’s hopes of a semi-final spot.