Image courtesy of: SuperSport
Du Plessis walloped 77 runs off 42 balls
South Africa captain Faf du Plessis smashed a sparkling half-century to lead the Proteas to a 14-run win over the country’s rugby team, who are better known as the Springboks.
Even though du Plessis was well supported by batsman David Miller, who hammered 40 runs and took two wickets, the match, which was part of South Africa’s Festival of Cricket, turned out to be much closer than most people would have thought.
Springboks captain Victor Matfield won the toss and chose to bowl first.
His decision to do so paid off as South Africa opening batsman Quinton de Kock was caught behind off the bowling of Willem Alberts for just eight runs.
Alberts struck again the very next ball as Henry Davids was caught by Frans Steyn for a golden duck.
South Africa veteran all-rounder Jacques Kallis managed to score 39 runs off 32 balls, which included five boundaries and a six, before being caught by Robert Skinstad off the bowling of Duane Vermeulen.
Jean Paul (JP) Duminy made a quickfire 20 before being caught by Fabian Juries off the bowling of Steyn.
With South Africa looking to be in a spot of bother at 99/4, du Plessis and Miller took over and rescued the Proteas with a fantastic 89-run partnership, during which du Plessis brought up his half-century.
Du Plessis and Miller eventually led South Africa to an excellent score of 188 off their 20 overs.
Du Plessis finished on 77 off 42 balls, which included seven boundaries and three sixes, while Miller remained undefeated on 40 off 22 deliveries, which included four boundaries and a six.
Alberts was the pick of the bowlers for the Springboks with two wickets, while Steyn and Vermeulen chipped in with one wicket apiece.
Chasing a tough target of 189 to win, the Springboks got off to a poor start as opening batsman Tiaan Liebenberg was given out lbw off the bowling of Lonwabo Tsotsobe for only three runs.
Juries only managed to amass nine runs before being stumped by Duminy off the bowling of Miller.
Matfield ended up making 23 runs before being caught by David Wiese off the bowling of du Plessis.
Following Matfield’s dismissal, the Springboks lost Franco van der Merwe and Butch James in quick succession.
Skinstad clobbered 34 runs off 22 balls, which included four boundaries and two sixes, before being caught by du Plessis off the bowling of Ryan McLaren.
The Springboks’ lower order batsmen failed to make any major contributions and they were soon bowled out for 174.
Kallis, Tsotsobe, Miller and McLaren all picked up two wickets apiece, while du Plessis, Aaron Phangiso and Wayne Parnell snapped up one wicket each.