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Afghans bow out of T20 WC with SA defeat

Barbados: South Africa crushed Afghanistan, bowling out the tournament debutants for 80, to win by 59 runs and take their place in the Super Eight stage of the Twenty20 World Cup.

The result eliminates Afghanistan from the tournament but the team representing the war-torn country can take encouragement from an aggressive and enthusiastic bowling display that restricted South Africa to a modest score of 139 for seven.

Graeme Smith (27) and Jacques Kallis (34) provided the backbone to a largely unconvincing South African batting display but their fast bowlers proved far too much for a team making their first appearance in a major tournament.

The result means that none of the un-favoured teams, Zimbabwe, Bangladesh, Ireland or Afghanistan, have advanced from the group stage of the competition.

The Afghan batting display showed a gulf in technique and experience as the top order proved unable to cope with pace, with Morne Morkel taking four wickets in three devastating overs.

At times the Afghan batsmen looked unnerved by the pace and bounce of the Kensington Oval pitch and none of their top seven Afghan batsmen made double figures.

They slumped to 25 for seven before Mirwais Ashraf restored some pride and provided the crowd with some excitement, hitting two sixes in his spirited 23 from 25 balls.

Hamid Hassan, who had earlier bowled superbly taking three wickets for 21 run from his four overs and showed himself to be an accomplished "death bowler" bowling a full length with his in-swing, clobbered two more sixes in his cameo off 22.

South Africa have little time to reflect on their win -- they face New Zealand on Thursday following the opening Super Eight game between England and Pakistan.

Bureau Report

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