South Africa clinch a one-run thriller against New Zealand (Lead)

June 10th, 2009 - 3:39 am ICT by IANS  

Ross Taylor London, June 10 (IANS) South Africa Tuesday eked out a thrilling one-run victory over New Zealand by defending a modest total of 128 runs in an inconsequential World Twenty20 Group D match, as both the team have qualified for Super Eight stage.
Put into bat first, South African bastmen struggled against a disciplined New Zealand bowling attack and could make only 128 for seven in 20 overs at the Lord’s.

Skipper Brendon McCullum’s half-century went in vain and New Zealand fell short by one run losing five wickets.

McCullum led the chase with a valiant 57 off 54 balls but Man of the match Roelof van der Merwe spun his team to an exciting win by picking up two crucial wickets and conceding just 14 runs from his four overs.

Left-arm spinner Van der Merwe got Brendon stumped by Mark Boucher at a time when the New Zealand captain was on song and also castled Ross Taylor’s (22) stumps to derail their run chase.

Jacob Oram made a fighting 24 but couldn’t manage the winning run off the last over bowled by the 19-year-old left-arm pacer Wayne Parnell, who kept his head cool and bowled a sensible line to deny New Zealand a win.

Earlier, South Africa failed to capitalise on a steady start given by openers Graeme Smith (33) and Jacques Kallis (24).

In the absence of skipper Daniel Vettori, who missed the second consecutive game in the tournament with a shoulder injury, pacer Kyle Mills spearheaded the New Zealand bowling attack and got some movements while lanky seamer Ian Butler spitted fire with his raw pace and swing and picked up two wickets for 13 runs from his four overs.

Off-spinner Nathan McCullum, elder brother of Brendon, and Scott Styris with his slow medium pacers arrested the South African run flow.

Some big hits by Jean Paul Duminy (29) and AB de Villiers (15) in the last few overs helped South Africa cross the three-figure mark.

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