It's out of the Proteas' hands now

Imran Tahir (Gallo)
Imran Tahir (Gallo)

Cape Town - The West Indies edged out the Proteas by 3 wickets with 2 balls to spare at Nagpur on Friday evening to become the second team after New Zealand to qualify for the ICC World Twenty20 semi-finals.

The Proteas will now depend on another result to go their way when England play Sri Lanka to have any chance of reaching the last four. Sri Lanka will need to win that match and then the Proteas in turn will have to beat Sri Lanka on Monday evening.

If that scenario pans out then all three those teams will finish level on points. The one factor in favour of the Proteas is that they currently have the best run rate of the three teams.

The Proteas, sent into bat, got off to a bad start when Hashim Amla was run out off the third ball of the first over and they depended on Quinton de Kock (47 off 46 balls, 3 fours and a six) and David Wiese who shared a sixth wicket partnership of 50 to get them to a modest total of 122.

Darren Sammy’s thinking behind his decision to field first became clear when the Proteas struggled with a heavy dew when it came to their turn to bowl and field. They nevertheless put up a good rearguard action, drawing inspiration from Kagiso Rabada bowling Chris Gayle with the fifth ball of the West Indies innings.

The latter nevertheless looked to have the match well under control when they went into the last 4 overs needing a run a ball with six wickets still intact.

However, Imran Tahir took two wickets off successive balls while conceding only a single in the 17th over and then Wiese conceded only 3 runs in the 18th over.

The West Indies needed 20 runs off the last two overs and they managed 11 off Chris Morris’ 19th over and then Carlos Brathwaite settled the issue to all intents and purposes by hitting a six off Rabada’s second delivery of the 20th over.

The West Indies victory was set up by man of the match, Marlon Samuels, who hit 44 off 44 balls with 6 boundaries.

The Proteas brought in Rilee Rossouw to replace JP Duminy while Aaron Phangiso took the place of Kyle Abbott. Phangiso certainly justified his selection by taking 1/19 in 4 overs.

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