South Africa 77-5 (Amla 47no) v
England 29-2 - no result
Second Twenty20 International, Old Trafford
On a frustrating evening for players and spectators alike, the second Twenty20 International between England and South Africa was abandoned as a no result with just five more balls required to confirm a legitimate match.
This came despite the game being reduced to nine overs per side following a prolonged spell of rain that delayed the start by two hours, after which South Africa reached 77 for five.
England then limped to 29 for two in 4.1 overs and were well behind the Duckworth/Lewis par score when the rain arrived again to finally put everybody out of their misery.
It had started well for England as Steven Finn had Richard Levi caught behind by Craig Kieswetter from the first ball of the innings and single-figures scores were also all that AB de Villiers (1), Albie Morkel (3), JP Duminy (5) and Justin Ontong (1) could manage.
However, at the other end, continuing his glorious summer in England, Hashim Amla serenely registered a new career-best score of 47 not out in 30 balls. He took advantage of a bad miss by Eoin Morgan to hit seven fours and dominate the batting.
He was finally given some support by Jacques Kallis - in at number seven - who hit 13 not out in seven balls, England captain Stuart Broad bearing the brunt of a late attack and coneding 27 runs in his two overs.
Graeme Swann, Jade Dernbach and Luke Wright - introduced to the side as the runless Ravi Bopara was dropped - all took a wicket apiece.
England's run chase got off to a stuttering start as the storm clouds gathered. It took Kieswetter four balls to get off the mark and he went no further, brilliantly caught by Robin Peterson off Dale Steyn in the second over.
Opening partner Alex Hales cracked a six - edged over third man - and was unbeaten on 12 in eight balls and the other England wicket to fall was that of Wright. The Morkel brothers combined to remove him, Morne taking the catch and Albie doingn the bowling after the Sussex man had made 14 in 11 balls, trying to force the pace.
His dismissal was the last meaningful action of the match as shortly after, the two teams left the field of play and there was insufficient time remaining even to simply bowl the five balls that would have completed the formalities and put South Africa 2-0 up in the series.
Instead, they go to Edgbaston on Wednesday one game to the good and England are still alive in the series.
© Cricket World 2012