In an entertaining contest Zimbabwe gave Protease a tough fight before losing the match by 62 runs. South Africa wouldn't have expected this kind of a contest against the minnows. If Miller and Duminy helped South Africa to put up a mammoth total after a poor start, with the help of their respective centuries, then while defending, spinner Imran Tahir was the pick among the bowlers with his three wicket haul.
Over 48.2 || Score 277/10
It's all over as Morkel picked up the final wicket of Chatara to seal the match for South Africa. So eventually in a good contest Zimbabwe are beaten by 62 runs.
TL Chatara c & b Morkel 6 (11b)
Over 48 || Score 277/9
Mire's cameo comes to an end as Philander got the better of him in the 48th over. Though, South Africa are on the verge of winning their World Cup opener, Zimbabwe gave them a tough fight through the match to make it an an interesting contest.
SF Mire c de Villiers b Philander 27 (25b)
Over 45 || Score 262/8
Tahir picks up his third wicket as the game is almost over Zimbabwe. Solomon Mire and Tendai Chatara are at the crease. Two more wickets for the Protease and the game will be over. Zim need 78 runs in 30 balls to win the match.
T Panyangara c de Villiers b Imran Tahir 4 (4b)
Over 43 || Score 240/7
Finally, Dale Steyn picked up his first wicket of the match in the form of Ervine with the help of a short ball. Now it can be said that Zimbabwe are on the verge of losing their opening match. South Africa need mere three wicket to seal the match.
CR Ervine c de Villiers b Steyn 13 (21b)
Over 42 || Score 238/6
Chigumbura run out! And that's the last thing Zimbabwe would have asked for. With every passing over task is getting difficult for Zimbabwe. Minnows require 102 in 48 balls to win the match and they have four wickets in hand.
E Chigumbura run out 8 (7b)
Over 40 || Score 234/5
Chigumbura and Ervine are at the crease after the fall of two quick wickets. And in the last two overs both the batsmen have scored a six each to clear their intentions. Zimbabwe require 106 runs in the last 60 balls to win the match. A tough task but still very much possible.
Over 38 || Score 220/5
Taylor Out! Morkel picks up his first wicket in the form of dangerous looking Taylor and at the right time. Craig Ervine is the new man in. But after losing Taylor in the 37th over, Zimababwe lost their another wicket in the form of Williams as Duminy got the better of him. With two wickets in quick successions Zimbabwe's chase has become derailed as half of the side is back in the hut.
BRM Taylor c Philander b Morkel 40 (40b)
Over 35 || Score 207/3
Imran Tahir once again provides his team another crucial breakthrough, this time in the form of Masakadza. But undoubtedly it's one of his best knocks. After the fall of Masakadza, Taylor has taken the charge to hit the big shots. Zimbabwe need 133 runs in 15 overs to seal the match, which is quite achievable. And Zimbabwe have also crossed the mark of 200.
H Masakadza c Amla b Imran Tahir 80 (74b)
Over 32 || Score 189/2
Zimbabwe are still fighting and fighting hard. They are not ready to throw in the towel. Masakadza needs to play till the very end if Zimbabwe wants to snatch a victory here. In fact South Africa are not looking like a world class bowling unit at the moment.
Over 27 || Score 161/2
Imran Tahir strikes, Chibhabha Out! Finally, the gutsy knock of Chibhabha came to an end. Brendan Taylor is the new man in. Now the responsibility is on Masakadza's shoulders as he has been at the crease for quite some time now to maintain the momentum.
CJ Chibhabha c Duminy b Imran Tahir 64 (82b)
Over 23 || Score 130/1
Chibhabha and Masakadza are now changing gears. They are going for big shots and that's the only way they can chase the huge total. In the last three overs they have scored two sixes and two boundaries to collect 28 runs. Bowlers are looking clueless.
Over 20 || Score 102/1
Opener Chibhabha completed his fifty. What a gutsy innings by the right-hander. In the meantime Zimbabwe have crossed the mark of hundred as well. South African bowling line-up is looking ordinary at the moment.
Over 18 || Score 97/1
AB has given the ball to premier spinner Imran Tahir, a leggie, who can provide them the much needed breakthrough. In the last two overs Zimbabwe managed to score mere six runs.
Over 16 || Score 91/1
Masakadza is now started opening up a bit. He first collected two boundaries in the 15th over bowled by Morkel and then in the next over hit Duminy for two consecutive fours as well. 19 runs have come in the last two overs, which is a good sign for Zimbabwe.
Over 14 || Score 72/1
Hamilton Masakadza seems to spend some time in the middle before going for his shots, on the other end, opener Chibhabha is hitting boundaries whenever getting the loose deliveries. In the meanwhile, centurion JP Duminy has been given the ball to roll his arms.
Over 12 || Score 65/1
Farhaan Behardien has been introduced into the attack as the second bowling change. Zimbabwe need to score runs at a rapid pace as they are chasing a mammoth total, otherwise asking rate will sore only from here onwards.
Over 10 || Score 56/1
Zimbabwe have crossed the 50-run mark in the ninth over. Chibhabha is playing proper cricketing shots and is not even shying to hit one of the fastest bowlers in the world cricket -- Dale Steyn. But they need a big partnership here to put some pressure on the Protease.
Over 8 || Score 47/1
First breakthrough for South Africa as Philander strikes! Raza played the ball on to the stumps. Hamilton Masakadza joined Chamu Chibhabha in the middle. Meanwhile, skipper AB has done the first bowling change by calling his bowling spearhead Dale Steyn.
Sikandar Raza b Philander 5 (13b)
Over 5 || Score 32/0
Steady start by Zimbabwe openers -- Chamu Chibhabha and Sikandar Raza -- as they have added 32 runs in the first five overs. But they need to up the ante as they are chasing a big total of 339. Vernon Philander and Morne Morkel have opened the bowling for SA, but are still looking for their first breakthrough.
South Africa Innings
Over 50 || Score 339/4
Duminy too has completed his hundred as South Africa eventually managed to put up an imposing total of 339 runs after a poor start by the Protease top order. Unbeaten 256 runs partnership between Miller and Duminy shifted the momentum towards SA. Both the batsmen completed their hundreds to take their side to a comfortable position.
Over 48 || Score 308/4
In the 48th over Miller smacked Mire all over the park to collect 30 runs from the over. Mire looked clueless as Miller proved once again that he has a wide range of shots up his sleeves. And with that SA crossed the 300-run mark.
Over 46 || Score 262/4
Miller has completed his hundred with the help of three boundaries and six sixes. This is the second hundred of the on-going edition of the ICC World Cup, as the first one was hit by Australian opener Aaron Finch. It's a rain of sixes here at Seddon Park as in the last two overs we have seen three sixes. Zimbabwean bowlers are now struggling to stop the run-flow.
Over 44 || Score 228/4
Panyangara, who gave Zimbabwe an excellent bowling start, bowled another tight over (44th) at a time when both the batsmen are hitting the ball well. 14 runs came in the last two overs. Miller has reached to 84, whereas, Duminy is on 64, as they have already added 145 runs for the fifth wicket.
Over 42 || Score 214/4
Now Miller and Duminy have decided to go for big shots as they have six wickets in hand and less than ten overs are left in the innings. In the 41st over bowled by Williams, both the batsmen smashed a six each to collect 14 from the over. Both the batsmen have completed their fifties and are looking dangerous. Meanwhile, the Protease have crossed the 200-run mark. SA have collected 21 runs in the last two overs.
Over 40 || Score 193/4
Miller has started scoring boundaries at will. Duminy is doing the right thing from the other end by giving Miller more strike by taking singles. For the fifth wicket they have already added hundred runs. Zimbabwean bowlers are now looking clueless.
Over 38 || Score 174/4
Miller has started breaking the shackles as the Batting Powerplay is on. In the 37th over he launched Panyangara for a six and then in the next over completed his maiden World Cup fifty. Now it's a testing time Zimbabwean bowlers, who have so far bowled really well.
Over 35 || Score 151/4
Duminy is playing on 40, whereas, Miller is unbeaten on 36. They have added 69 runs for the fifth wicket and are looking set to put up a challenging total in front of Zimbabwe. Each Zimbabwean bowler has kept things tight thus far. Meanwhile, SA have crossed the 150-run mark.
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Over 30 || Score 131/4
Duminy and Miller are playing sensible cricket in the middle. They have started building up a crucial partnership for South Africa. But still the Zimbabwean bowlers are not offering much room the batsmen to score runs freely.
Over 25 || Score 102/4
Tafadzwa Kamungozi and Sikandar Raza are bowling in tandem. Miller and Jean-Paul Duminy are dealing in singles at the moment. Even after 25 overs Zimbabwe are dominating the proceedings. SA desperately need a big partnership here. Meanwhile, the Protease have crosses the mark of hundred.
Over 21 || Score 84/4
Big blow for SA, AB de Villiers Out! He dances down the wicket to clear the long off boundary but Ervine picks an outstanding catch to provide spinner Kamungozi his first wicket. Jean-Paul Duminy is the new man in. Is the South African ship shrinking?
Over 18 || Score 72/3
Du Plessis OUT! Soft dismissal. Leg stump line by Chigumbura, Du Plessis tries to play it fine towards fine-leg region but ends up giving a simple catch to the wicketkeeper Taylor. Zimbabwe are right on top of the match. David Miller has walked in to join skipper AB in the middle.
F du Plessis c Taylor b Chigumbura 24 (32b)
Over 15 || Score 55/2
Both the batsmen are dealing in singles and doubles at the moment. Meanwhile, the Protease have finally crossed the 50-run mark, a real slow start by them against Zimbabwe.
Over 14 || Score 48/2
Though two of the most dangerous batsmen in the world -- AB de Villiers and Faf du Plessis -- are right in the middle but fine bowling by Zimbabwean bowlers are forcing them to look for singles and doubles. Solomon Mire and Elton Chigumbura are bowling in tandem for the minnows at the moment.
Over 10 || Score 28/2
AB de Villiers is the new man in, after the fall of Amla's wicket. Off the fifth ball, the dangerous batsman dances down the wicket to clobber Chatara straight over long off for the first six of the match. But after ten overs, one can say that Zimbabwe have dominated the proceedings so far.
Over 9 || Score 21/2
Big wicket, Hashim Amla Out! Length ball by Panyangara, Amla gets an inside edge of his bat and it hits the bails. Both the South African batsmen are back in the hut. Zimbabwe couldn't have asked for a better start than this against one of the favourites to win the tournament.
HM Amla b Panyangara 11 (26b)
Over 7 || Score 20/1
Disciplined bowling thus far by the the Zimbabwean strike bowlers -- Panyangara and Chatara. They are not offering much room to the South African batsmen to open their arms. In the first seven overs they conceded mere one boundary that too came from the bat of Amla.
Over 4 || Score 10/1
Tendai Chatara STRIKES! De Kock tries to play a flashy cover drive but finds a fielder at short covers, who takes a sharp catch to send the southpaw back to pavilion. Good start by the Zimbabwe bowlers. Faf du Plessis is the new man in.
Q de Kock c Ervine b Chatara 7 (16b)
Over 2 || Score 3/0
Amla pushes the third ball towards extra cover to open team's account with a double. Another good over for minnows, Zimbabwe, as the bower conceded three runs from it.
Tendai Chatara is starting the bowling proceedings from the other end.
Over 1 || Score 0/0
Panyangara is right on the money as he bowls a tight first over, where doesn't leak a single run.
Quinton de Kock and Hashim Amla are in the middle to open the innings for South Africa, whereas, Tinashe Panyangara is set to bowl the first over.
Toss: Zimbabwe have won the toss and will bowl first.
South Africa are once again one of the favourites to win the ICC World Cup. And they are all set to start their WC campaign against Zimbabwe in a Group B encounter.
Though Zimbabwe are not a strong side if compared with the dominant Proteas, Hashim Amla-led side can’t take the minnows lightly, especially at a time when the former have proved their mettle against New Zealand and Sri Lanka in the World Cup warm-up games.
And the ‘chockers’ have also faced defeat from the hands of Zimbabwe during the 1999 World Cup.
But an upset is highly unlikely as the likes of AB de Villiers, Amla, Quinton de Kock and Faf du Plessis make South Africa a dangerous batting unit. At the same time they have world-class bowling trio in Dayle Steyn, Morne Morkel and Vernon Philander.
On the other hand, Zimbabwe can take heart from the fact that they have the services of Dav Whatmore, who possess a good World Cup record as a coach.
But South Africa are certainly the favourites going into the match.