Mar 18, 2016 23:15(IST)
Sensational, irrational, incredible, historic. Adjectives cannot do justice to this game. What a brilliant game of T20 cricket. Not a day for bowling, but some brilliant batting on display by both sides. Joe Root played an innings he'll never forget.
After South Africa's innings, not many would've put their money on England. But they executed an intelligent chase, paced it beautifully with Root at the centre of it all.
"I just batted naturally, and played god cricket shots. We couldn't have asked for a better start, it took the pressure off us," says Man of the Match Joe Root. "It was about staying cool, get a boundary an over and rotating the strike."
We have witnessed not just explosive, but brilliant and smart cricket today, which is not often the case in the 20-over game. England, after their loss against Chris Gayle, are right back into it. The World T20 has just begun, my friends. South Africa have started with a loss, but they'll take plenty positives from the game, all of them related to batting surely. They, like England need to work on their bowling a lot, especially in the death overs. Both sides were also quite sloppy on the field. That's one thing that you cannot afford in this format.
We leave you here, with your mind blown, just as ours have been. But do remember to join us tomorrow for the all-important and much talked about India vs Pakistan at Eden Gardens. Let's hope the game lives up to its narrative. See you folks then. Till then, goodbye and goodnight.
That's it, Moeen Ali has got the winning runs, juts lofts it over mid on. England has completed the second highest run chase in the history of T20I. ENGLAND snatch a 2-wicket win over SOUTH AFRICA, with two balls to spare. They chased down a target of 230. What a match! 23:02(IST)
DOT BALL! This match is unadvised for the weak at heart! Still one required off 3 balls 23:02(IST)
OUT! Hesitation while running the winning run, and David Willey is run out on a duck. This is nerve-racking, but surely England has to win it, just a single run required off 4 balls. 229/8 23:00(IST)
OUT! Jordan is out, in hunt for a big six to end it in style. England 229/7 Still just one needed off five balls 22:59(IST) After 19 overs,England 229/6 ( Moeen Ali 7 , Chris Jordan 5)
Just one needed off the last over now as Jordan's boundary eases England's nerves. This has been a brillliant chase, with Joe Root at the root of it all.
6 from 8 *goes back to biting nails* 22:55(IST)
Root gives a good, long pep talk to
Moeen Ali before departing. Looks like it has worked. Ali thrashes Rabada for four. Only Seven needed now off 9 balls 22:54(IST)
OUT! Root falls, finally. Rabada gets him, Root pulls him in hunt for another six but finds Miller near the ropes! Can England do it without Root? 11 needed of 10 balls 22:52(IST) After 18 overs,England 219/5 ( Joe Root 83 , Moeen Ali 2)
WHAT AN OVER FOR ENGLAND! 17 off it, Boundaries, byes and misfields. it's all going against South Africa now. Just 11 more needed off the last two overs. 22:45(IST) After 17 overs,England 202/5 ( Joe Root 70 , Moeen Ali 2)
Root is unfazed by the dismissal of his sidekick, he continues to be the solo superhero for England with back-to back four and a six off the first two balls from Abbott's over. The extras are also not helping South Africa's case. If Root takes England across the finish line. it'll be the second highest succesful T20I run chase ever. And he is well on his way to do it. 14 runs off the over. 28 runs required from 18 balls. 22:40(IST) After 16 overs,England 188/5 ( Joe Root 58 , Moeen Ali 1) OUT! Jos Buttler, who's been playing sidekick to Root up till now, is stumped out. Tahir strikes, spinners back in the fray to help SA in troubling times. It was a bizarre dismissal. Buttler was trapped out side his crease, but as de Kock pummelled the stumps the ball flew off his hands. But the third umpire has correctly called it out.
Tahir tightens it up a bit, just 5 off the over. Moeen Ali has come to bat.
22:34(IST) After 15 overs,England 183/4 ( Joe Root 55 , Jos Buttler (W) 20)
This is why Joe Root is considered among one of the best batting talents in the world. He reaches a superb half century off 29 balls, with a reverse-scooped six over third-man off Morris. Root has not let Buttler play in his typical firebrand way, because it's not needed! 13 off the last over. Just 47 more required from 30 balls. As crazy as it sounds, the equation is just that.
22:27(IST) After 14 overs,England 170/4 ( Joe Root 46 , Jos Buttler (W) 18)
Sixty now needed from 36 balls! On a day like this, that doesn't sound crazy at all. At 10 runs an over, England look like they're well on track to win this one if they manage to hold on their wickets.
22:26(IST) After 13 overs,England 160/4 ( Joe Root 43 , Jos Buttler (W) 14)
You know it's not a bowler's day when Dale Steyn is getting whacked around. He's gone for 35 off his two overs, with no wickets ot his name. Root is putting up brave reply to SA's batting display. He eased Steyn's delivery wide off leg stump to the fine-leg boundary. England are well on thier way to what will be the biggest T20I win of all time.
22:18(IST) After 12 overs,England 148/4 ( Joe Root 33 , Jos Buttler (W) 13)
Joe Root has yanked England out of that short slump, they are back in hunt. 30 runs off the last two overs, courtesy 2 sixes and 2 fours shared equally by Root and big-hitting Jos Buttler. The chase is back on. This game is a run-oozing cracker.
22:08(IST) After 10 overs,England 118/4 ( Joe Root 18 , Jos Buttler (W) 1)
OUT! Morgan departs! Duminy has done the trick for SA. A quicker ball that confounds Morgan and bowls him out! But finally the boundary drought ends. Root sends a six flying over mid-wicket. 22:04(IST) After 9 overs,England 109/3 ( Joe Root 11 , Eoin Morgan (C) 11)
23 deliveries without a boundary. Spinners doing the trick for SA. Just 6 off the over from Tahir. England in need of big ones, 121 needed off 11 overs.
22:01(IST) After 8 overs,England 103/3 ( Joe Root 10 , Eoin Morgan (C) 7)
SA Spinners are tightening the screws over England no boundary for the last two overs. Just 24 runs in the last three overs. Duminy bowls in a great over for SA. Just seven off it. This slow period will put England under much pressure, boundaries are th only way you win this one.
21:57(IST) Chance of Winning on a swing today
25th over: Absolute mayhem from Roy and Hales. 44 runs from the first 2 overs, bringing England's COW up to 35% from 29% at innings break. Even with the wicket of Hales in the 3rd over, their COW increases to 38% out of sheer momentum (helped along by a Jason Roy six). the 4th and 5th overs together yielded 23 runs, the same as the 2nd over, with the prize wicket of Roy, but England's COW still climbing steadily to 44%. 21:55(IST)
Powerplay was christened 'powerplay' for days like these 21:50(IST) After 6 overs,England 89/3 ( Joe Root 2 , Eoin Morgan (C) 1)
OUT! Stokes is gone! Rabada strikes back with a vengeance. He was greeted with a six from Stokes off his first ball in the over, Stokes went for another big one at deep square leg on the fourth, but Morris is there to catch him out. Two new batsmen now on the crease, Joe Root is joined by his captain Eoin Morgan. 21:45(IST) After 5 overs,England 79/2 ( Ben Stokes 8 , Joe Root 1) OUT! Roy departs after his brilliant 43 off 16 balls. He scooped Abbott for a six over fine-leg, went for the cheeky shot again in the next ball, mistimes and edges the ball high up. De Kock has no problem catching it. Roy hit 5 fours and three sixes. Joe Root comes into bat.
The six and 5 wides off a bouncer that sailed over the batsman and the keeper gets England 14 runs off the over.
21:39(IST) After 4 overs,South Africa 50/0 ( Hashim Amla 10 , Quinton de Kock (W) 40)
Rabada brough back into the attack. And the commentator says "just 9 off the over". Yes, it can't get more economical than that on days like these. A good comeback from Rabada, just a single four in the over off his third over that Stokes sent to the Point boundary.
It's one of those days when bowlers should stay at home. 21:34(IST) After 3 overs,England 56/1 ( Jason Roy 33 , Ben Stokes 1)
Roy has continued the onslaught, he's not missing Hales. He hooks Abbott for brilliant six. England have come out all guns firing.
OUT! Alex Hales is trapped leg-before by Abbott. The change in bowling has done the trick. It wasn't a kind welcome for Rabada, playing his first World T20. Ben Stokes comes in to bat now. 21:28(IST) After 2 overs,England 44/0 ( Jason Roy 26 , Alex Hales 13)
So, Alex Hales joined the party. Three back to back fours. And he was dropped too. Dale Steyn getting hit for three consecutive fours, you don't see that every day. And Roy joined in too, he slices a ball wide off off-stump and the ball flies off and falls just short off a six, and then, just the next ball he gets a six. Slapping one on his pads to square leg. England have come with a mission on their mind! 23 runs form the over. 44 off 2 overs. Cricket, bloody hell!
21:23(IST) After 1 overs,England 21/0 ( Jason Roy 16 , Alex Hales 0)
The chase is on! England start off with four fours off the first over. Exactly the kind of statement one needs to make while starting a chase that big. Not a good start for Rabada, he even gave away 5 wides. Game on. 21:18(IST)
Now time for the England batsmen to prove a point or to. Twenty-year-old South African pace phenomenon Kagiso Rabada will open the bowling, his first World T20. Hales and Roy open for England
21:09(IST) 21:06(IST) 21:05(IST) After 20 overs,South Africa 229/4 ( JP Duminy 54 , David Miller 28)
Two sixes and a four in the last over. Miller and Duminy have taken South Africa to 229/4. They have demolished not just England's bowling, but also their very spirits. How do you come back from this? Morgan and his men have a mammoth task at hand. The run party put on show by South Africa will be hard to match.
20:56(IST) After 19 overs,South Africa 211/4 ( JP Duminy 47 , David Miller 17)
Topley is brought back into the attack, Duminy topples him right out. 2 sixes from the first 2 balls, he has now raced to 47 off 25 balls, 2 sixes and 3 fours. One last over to go, England can be looking at a target in excess of 225. 20:52(IST)
All over the place. Looks like footmarks off a dance floor. 20:50(IST) After 18 overs,South Africa 193/4 ( JP Duminy 31 , David Miller 15)
The Miller fireworks have started to too. He drives a gigantic one into the crowd over at deep-mid wicket. Sensational stuff. 11 runs off the over.
20:46(IST) After 17 overs,South Africa 182/4 ( JP Duminy 28 , David Miller 7)
It's not just been a horrible day with the ball for England, their fielding has been high-school-esque. Your captain wins the toss, chooses to bowl, and then the entire team comes up with such pathetic performance on the field. This is unacceptable.
Miller gets his first boundary in the over with a galnce off Jordan.
Also, du Plessis joined the grand club in T20Is 20:39(IST)
David Miller walks in, another guy who likes to send the ball in the crowd.
OUT! Du Plessis tries to whack it to the cow corner but there's Roy standing between the ball and the boundary. The SA captain departs after 17 off 17 balls. South Africa 169/4 20:35(IST) After 15 overs,South Africa 166/3 ( Faf du Plessis (C) 15 , JP Duminy 22)
This has got to be mentally agonising for the English bowlers. The sort of beating that leaves a mark on your bum and reminds you of the punishment and ignominy every time you take a seat. Looks like England are going to be standing for a while. Two fours off that last over too, one apiece for Duminy and du Plessis. SA 166/3 after 15 overs. This is going way beyond 200.
20:30(IST) After 14 overs,South Africa 152/3 ( Faf du Plessis (C) 10 , JP Duminy 16)
Two fours from Duminy take South Africa to 150, and it's come in some speed, Just 14 overs! Duminy and du Plessis carrying on the good work of de Kock and Amla
20:22(IST) After 12 overs,South Africa 134/3 ( Faf du Plessis (C) 7 , JP Duminy 1)
The wicket of De Villers and Amla has slowed down South Africa a bit. Just 9 runs off the last two overs. Du Plessis an Duminy the new guys in, up to them now to extend the opening blitz.
OUT! Amla's heroics come to an end, but the man has done his job. After being on the receiving end of a considerable amount of whacking, Ali finally traps Amla, leg-before. He made 58 off 31, seven fours and three sixes. 20:16(IST) Chance of Winning
5th over: South Africa began the match with a 53% COW. The 1st over went for just 2 runs, but then de Kock and Amla wreaked wholesale destruction, boosting their COW to 62% by the 5th over. 20:16(IST) 20:15(IST) After 10 overs,South Africa 125/2 ( Hashim Amla 54 , Faf du Plessis (C) 3) Amla reaches half-century with a maximum off Ali. He's now on 54 off 25. De Villiers and De Kock might've walked, but De Amla won't stop. What a batting masterclass from the man!
OUT! ngland De Villers departs after his 16-run cameo. E captain Morgan takes the catch. De Villers hit two back to back sixes off Rashid, but this one only travelled till Morgan. The most popular man in cricket departs on 16 off 8 20:07(IST) After 8 overs,South Africa 100/1 ( Hashim Amla 46 , AB de Villiers 2)
De Kock's dismissal takes Proteas' foot off the pedal, at least for the over. AB De Villiers is now in the house, And he's greeted with a roar!
With this kind of a start, the crowd must be going crazy. It's a treat served in sixes and fours.
OUT! De Kock doesn't clear the rope this time, finds Alex Hales instead. He's out after a brilliant 52 off 24. 20:00(IST) After 6 overs,South Africa 83/0 ( Hashim Amla 37 , Quinton de Kock (W) 46)
A breather for England, just two fours off this over, one from Amla and one from de Kock. This is now a bragging party for the two brilliant batsmen.
19:56(IST) After 5 overs,South Africa 72/0 ( Hashim Amla 32 , Quinton de Kock (W) 40)
4,4,4,6,4: Amla's last over. This is frightening. There is no Gayle , but it's no less than a Gaylestorm. Amla has taken all the de Kock hitting personally and going all out himslef. This is excellent batting, nothing brutal about it. Simply beautiful. 19:49(IST) After 4 overs,South Africa 50/0 ( Hashim Amla 10 , Quinton de Kock (W) 40)
South Africa have raced away to a fifty in 3.5 overs! This time Amla joins the party as Moeen Ali joins the bowling attack. Amla hist two fours through the covers, then de Kock sends one to the ropes as well. Oh, and Amla was dropped too. Horrendoues start for England.
Some things never change. 19:44(IST) After 3 overs,South Africa 37/0 ( Hashim Amla 1 , Quinton de Kock (W) 36)
Willey gets the de Kock treatment. Two fours sandwiched between two sixes from the over. South Africa have raced away to 37 in three overs. The young South African is on fire tonight!
19:39(IST) After 2 overs,South Africa 17/0 ( Hashim Amla 1 , Quinton de Kock (W) 16)
De Kock turns up the heat on England A six, and two fours off Topley in the second over. 15 off the over, after only 2 from the preceding one. 19:36(IST)
Decent turnout tonight. And no doubts about who's the most popular guy on the field 19:35(IST) After 1 overs,South Africa 2/0 ( Hashim Amla 1 , Quinton de Kock (W) 1)
And the game is underway with a decent over from David Willey. Just two off it, quiet before the storm?
All of them have their eyes on the coin, but the guy in green cares not for money.
19:22(IST) 19:08(IST) 19:06(IST) The Toss
England captain Eoin Morgan has won the toss and opted to ball. He doest want a repeat of a 'Chris Gayle', he'd rather chase. He mumbles something about dew, but still looks visibly shaken by that Gaylestorm two nights ago.
19:04(IST) The Pitch Report
Surface still has some grass, like West Indies vs England. Experts saying it's a fantastic batting surface. So it seems the soil won't spoil anything for the crowd
19:01(IST) Words from the 'versatile' AB de Villiers just ahead of the game
"We're very excited, couldn 't have been more readier." - AB de Villers (England nervously scratching thier ears?)
"I'm ready to go, I;'ve gotta nurse my shoulder a bit and work with the physio, but it feels fine." - ABD on his shoulder injury
"I like to think I'm versatile. I'm starting at 4 tonight but It can change." - ABD on his batting order, and yes you think right, AB.
"Love playing here, but won't get any favours from England or the ground." -ABD on Wankhede
They've both got young big-hitters in Quinton de Kock and Jos Buttler. Whose bat will speak the loudest tonight? 18:46(IST)
Our man in the middle, Jigar Mehta, is there at Wankhede. He loves the place so much that he might not return from the hallowed venue. 18:41(IST)
As England still nurse their wounds they incurred against a Gaylestorm, they go up against South Africa. The Proteas will be opening their ICC World T20 2016 campaign against the hurtin and uder-pressure Three Lions at the Wankhede in Mumbai, but this won't be an easy task.
On paper South Africa looks much stronger than Morgan's men. Du Plessis, AB de Villiers, Hashim Amla, Quinton de Kock, David Miller; their batting is in good hands. And with Dale Steyn, Rabada, and Imran Tahir their bowling isn't too shoddy as well. This one will be a real test for England, who'd want to forget their early exit from the last World cup in 2015, and hope to go a long way in this one. Back to back defeats would leave England in a bad shape, so one can call it a must-win for then. But then, which match isn't for any team in a World T20. A game of inches, it's premier tournament counts inches in millimeters with stakes skyrocketing.
Will the Three Lions roar, or will South Africa start the World T20 on a winning note? Join
Firstpost Sports on the quest to discover the answer to that question on our Live Blog for South Africa vs England.
If you're here, you're welcome. If you are not, our doors are open. Stick with us for all World T20 action/drama/horror/suspense/thrill/romance.
England are in need of a win after losing their opening match while the Proteas want to get their bid for a first international trophy off to a strong start.
Captain Eoin Morgan's
England side were blown away by a Chris Gayle century at the Wankhede Stadium in Mumbai on Wednesday night as the West Indies won by six wickets.
"I think there's a little bit more pressure on the team that's lost their first game," du Plessis told reporters during his pre-match press conference on Thursday.
"If we were in their shoes and lost the first game you would feel that pressure going into the second game because you know if you lose you're possibly going to be out," he added.
South African team at a practice session ahead of their game against England. Solaris Images
South Africa the night match marks the start of their quest to once and for all remove the chokers tag that du Plessis admits has become "a monkey on the back" of their team.
Since their readmission in 1991 after the apartheid era ban, the Proteas have been the nearly men of world cups in both T20 and 50 over cricket, falling agonisingly short of the final on several occasions.
Despite their failure to win a major trophy,
South Africa are one of the tournament favourites and are currently in third place in the T20 world rankings.
They boast a formidable batting line-up that includes the captain himself, Hashim Amla, AB de Villiers and Quinton de Kock and du Plessis said confidence was high going into the Super 10 Group 1 match.
"For me our whole batting line up looks they're in form so that's a dangerous sign for the opposition," the 31-year-old warned.
England's Morgan will be looking for more from his batsmen after they fell short of his target of 200, finishing on 182 for six, and from his bowling attack who he said performed at around 80-90 percent.
The English skipper rued losing the toss to West Indies captain Darren Sammy, who opted to field, and Morgan feels the game of chance will again play a big part on Friday in Mumbai's humid conditions.
"Even at the toss I said I was going to chase so it could be a big part for me in the
South Africa game," he said.
The captain said before the tournament that he would use all 15 squad members at his disposal, and replacing David Willey with powerful fast bowler Liam Plunkett is a likely switch for Friday's do-or-die contest.
Morgan said he treated every match as "a must-win game" and the next encounter is no different as a second defeat would all but end
England's chances of progressing to the semi-finals.
Batsman-wicketkeeper Jos Buttler backed his players to "dust themselves down" and bounce back with a victory during their second tournament outing at the Wankhede.
"The game's been and gone and we'll be really focused tomorrow," he said.
"We've got characters in that dressing room that enjoy that occasion. They will stand up to it and look to take the game on."
Teams Faf du Plessis (captain), Kyle Abbott, Hashim Amla, Farhaan Behardien, Quinton de Kock, AB de Villiers, JP Duminy, Imran Tahir, Chris Morris, David Miller, Aaron Phangiso, Kagiso Rabada, Rilee Rossouw, Dale Steyn, David Wiese South Africa: Eoin Morgan (captain), Moeen Ali, Sam Billings, Jos Buttler, Liam Dawson, Alex Hales, Chris Jordan, Liam Plunkett, Adil Rashid, Joe Root, Jason Roy, Ben Stokes, Reece Topley, James Vince, David Willey England: