ICC T20 WC: Australia start campaign in confident style
Australia started their campaign in the T20 World Cup with a hard-fought five-wicket win over South Africa at the Zayed Cricket Stadium in Abu Dhabi.
Earlier, South Africa after being asked to bat posted a modest 118 for nine in their 20 overs and in response Australia chased down the target in 19.4 overs to finish on 121 for five.
South Africa lost wickets at regular intervals. They were reduced to 23 for three. Thereafter a 34 run fifth wicket stand between Aiden Markram (40) and David Miller revived the innings, but the line-up collapsed again as the other batsmen struggled completely. Except Kagiso Rabada's brisk 19 off 23 balls the other batsmen just simply could not add to the total as South Africa ended on 118 for nine.
For Australia the chief wicket-takers were Mitchell Starc (2-32), Josh Hazlewood (2-19) and Adam Zampa (2-21).
In their response, South Africa struck at regular intervals. Australia was reduced to 38 for three. But a 42 run stand between Steven Smith and Glenn Maxwell put Australia's chase back on track. Then both Smith and Maxwell fell quickly. But a sixth wicket stand between Marcus Stoinis (24 n.o.) and Matthew Wade put the Australian chase back on track. Australia overhauled the target in 19.4 overs to finish on 121 for five.
For South Africa the best bowler was Anrich Nortje (2-21).
South Africa: 118-9 (20)
Fall of wickets: 1-13 (Temba Bavuma-1.3 ov), 2-16 (Rassie van der Dussen-2.1 ov), 3-23 (Quinton de Kock-4.1 ov), 4-46 (Heinrich Klaasen-7.6 ov), 5-80 (David Miller-13.3 ov), 6-82 (Dwaine Pretorius-13.6 ov), 7-83 (Keshav Maharaj-14.3 ov), 8-98 (Aiden Markram-17.1 ov), 9-115 (Anrich Nortje-19.4 ov)
Australia: 121-5 (19.4)
Fall of wickets: 1-4 (Aaron Finch-1.5 ov), 2-20 (David Warner-4.3 ov), 3-38 (Mitchell Marsh-7.5 ov), 4-80 (Steven Smith-14.5 ov), 5-81 (Glenn Maxwell-15.2 ov)
Result: Australia won by five wickets
Australia: Aaron Finch (captain), David Warner, Mitchell Marsh, Glenn Maxwell, Steve Smith, Marcus Stoinis, Matthew Wade (wicket-keeper), Pat Cummins, Mitchell Starc, Adam Zampa, Josh Hazlewood
South Africa: Temba Bavuma (captain), Quinton de Kock (wicket-keeper), Aiden Markram, Rassie van der Dussen, David Miller, Heinrich Klaasen, Dwaine Pretorius, Kagiso Rabada, Keshav Maharaj, Anrich Nortje, Tabraiz Shamsi
Toss: Australia elect to field
Venue: Zayed Cricket Stadium, Abu Dhabi
Start time: 1400 hrs UAE time
Match officials: Michael Gough, Nitin Menon (On-field Umpires); Langton Rusere (TV Umpire); Ahsan Raza (Reserve Umpire); Javagal Srinath (Match-referee)
©Cricket World 2021