South Africa Ease To Comfortable Win Over Ireland
South Africa had a timely return to form for Shaun Pollock and a solid batting display from Jacques Kallis, Graeme Smith and Ashwell Prince to thank for a comfortable Super 8 win over Ireland in Guyana.
A seven wicket victory was set up by two wickets from Pollock before Kallis succeeded where he had personally failed against Sri Lanka by taking his side over the finish line, scoring an unbeaten 66 as South Africa posted 165 for 3 to beat Ireland's score of 152 for 8 off of 35 overs.
The result gives South Africa their second consecutive win in the Super 8s and moves them into a semi-final place at this stage.
Ireland set them a target of 160 from 35 overs to win as Duckworth-Lewis came into play, requiring South Africa to chase 8 more runs than Ireland due to several rain delays.
South Africa were troubled early on when AB De Villiers was dismissed without scoring, caught by William Porterfield off of the bowling of Boyd Rankin. Graeme Smith (41), Kallis, and Prince (47 not out, including a six to win the game) then steadied the ship before closing the game out in clinical fashion to prevent another upset.
Earlier, in between rain breaks which disrupted the Irish innings, Andrew White (30) and Eoin Morgan (28) top scored as the Irish struggled to post a big score in their allotted 35 overs.
Wickets fell regularly with Charl Langeveldt taking 3-41 and Shaun Pollock returning to something like his best with 2 for 17.
Pollock capped a good start for South Africa by removing the two openers early on.
The left-handed Jeremy Bray didn't manage to get off the mark before Pollock, who gave nothing away, trapped him leg before wicket to leave Ireland in early trouble at 0-1.
Pollock and fellow opener Makhaya Ntini have gave the Irish a hard time, taking advantage of fine bowling conditions.
The sides were off the field for long enough for the game to be reduced to 35 overs per side, and shortly after the resumption, Pollock had Porterfield caught by Jacques Kallis for 14.
© Cricket World 2007