England Dump South Africa Out Of Champions Trophy
England 323-8 (Shah 98, Collingwood 82) beat
South Africa 301-9 (Smith 141, Anderson 3-42) by 22 runs
ICC Champions Trophy Group B, Centurion
Graeme Smith's career-best effort in One-Day Internationals wasn't enough to prevent South Africa crashing to a 22-run defeat to England and exiting the ICC Champions Trophy at Centurion.
England smacked 12 sixes on their way to an imposing score of 323 for eight and the Proteas, led by Smith's brilliant 141, could only manage 301 for nine in reply.
After winning the toss and choosing to bat first, Andrew Strauss (25) and Joe Denly (21) made a bright start before England's innings took off with half-centuries from Owais Shah, Paul Collingwood and Eoin Morgan propelling them to the ninth-highest ODI score in their history and it was the first time that they passed 300 since February 2008.
After Denly scooped Jacques Kallis to JP Duminy at square leg and Mark Boucher pouched a superb catch to dismiss Strauss, Shah and Collingwood put on 163 for the third wicket.
Shah, who smashed 98 in 88 balls and Collingwood, who made 82 in 84, peppered the leg-side boundary with some clean-hitting, Shah hitting five fours and six sixes.
He fell to a bat-pad catch taken by Boucher as South Africa's spinners finally had something to celebrate, Johan Botha returning two for 56 and Collingwood played on to Wayne Parnell but Eoin Morgan then provided the innings with a final flourish.
He combined more clean hitting with some deft touches to race to 67 in just 34 balls with four fours and five sixes to give him plenty of confidence ahead of the daunting task of taking the gloves in the absence of Matthew Prior, who picked up a virus.
In reply, three of South Africa's top order batsmen fell to cross-batted shots on the onside, Herschelle Gibbs (22), Jacques Kallis (12) and AB de Villiers (36) failing to go on having made starts.
Gibbs was caught at mid-on by Luke Wright while Kallis and de Villiers both picked out Denly in the deep to leave South Africa at 142 for three with Smith still going strong.
He picked off 16 fours in his 134-ball stay at the crease, struggling with cramp later on in his innings and unhappy when Strauss refused to allow him a runner. Well as he played, he did enjoy three moments of fortune when Morgan missed a stumping, Shah dropped the simplest of catches and then Graham Onions should have had him trapped in front.
Collingwood also uncharacteristically shelled de Villiers at point but when Shah was given another chance later on when Smith skied Broad, he didn't make a mistake.
Graeme Swann bowled tidily, having JP Duminy bowled but it was left to James Anderson and Broad to dismiss the South African power hitters, Boucher (8) and Roelof van der Merwe (0) also bowled and Albie Morkel (17) run out by Morgan.
Some late-order defiance from Wayne Parnell (10 not out) and Dale Steyn (17 not out) ensured that South Africa at least lasted their 50 overs, Broad finishing with three for 67 and Anderson three for 42.
The result means that England qualify for the semi-finals and they will qualify alongside either Sri Lanka, or New Zealand, who they play on Tuesday 29th September.
© Cricket World 2009