New Zealand vs South Africa, Cricket World Cup semi-final
New Zealand create history, reach maiden World Cup final by beating South Africa
South Africa had established themselves up for a big appearance with heavy hitters in hand only to be denied seven overs when rain brushed in when they were 216-3 in the 38th over.
They additional 65 in the five overs after the continuation with David Miller scoring 49 of them from 18 balls.
De Villiers, who was on 60 at the shower break, faced 45 balls for his unbeaten 65.
South Africa had progressed at a modest pace through the first half of the innings before de Villiers inwards to accelerate the run rate from four to 6.53.
Eden Park does not hold great memories for the South African skipper after his previous visit ended in a loss to Pakistan in a rain-affected pool match.
As he attacked the New Zealand bowling, Faf du Plessis held up the other end to be 82 off 106 deliveries at the shower break and he was dismissed with the first ball he faced afterward the resumption.
De Villiers carried up his 50 in 32 deliveries. After being dropped by Kane Williamson at short cover on 38 he reached his half century with a six also two fours off the next three balls starting Corey Anderson.
It was one of four catches dropped by New Zealand. De Villiers, who did not sense comfortable with the Eden Park lights once chasing against Pakistan, opted to bat first in daylight once he won the toss.
It was a marginal noise as the heavy cloud cover played addicted to the hands of New Zealand’s swing bowlers.
Tim Southee and Trent Boult unlocked with three slips which produced to four slips and a gully by the sixth over.
The early momentum ran with South Africa as boundaries raced finished to the boundary, wicketkeeper Luke Ronchi dropped Quinton de Kock on six and Boult missed a difficult chance to catch Amla at long leg.
But their luck could not hold. In the fourth over, Boult bowled Amla for 10 and in the eighth over he needed de Kock caught for 14 to have South Africa at 31 for two.
The two dismissals took Boult to 21 for the contest eclipsing the previous best by a New Zealander at a World Cup set by Geoff Allott who took 20 wickets in 1999.
After Boult’s double strike, Du Plessis and Rilee Rossouw (39) put the innings backbone on track with an 83-run partnership but at a pedestrian pace that was not talked until de Villiers’s arrival.
McCullum plotted the fall of Rossouw by mixing up his fifth-bowler options with Kane Williamson and Grant Elliott getting an over each beforehand Anderson came on and claimed the wicket with his second delivery.
Boult finished with two for 53 and Anderson three for 72. The 23-year-old Matt Henry, thrust conventional into the frontline a day after being rushed into the squad when Adam Milne was ruled out with injury, had nobody for nine off his firstly five overs but his next three cost 31 runs.
New Zealand vs South Africa Full Video Highlights: ICC Cricket World Cup 2015 Semi-Final match Highlights
NZ Grant Elliott six took New Zealand past the semi-finals, Win a semi-final and history is not only finished, with a first-ever World Cup final arrival secured, but Brendon McCullum’s team determination be one step as of writing a spectacular episode in New Zealand’s sporting history. There is also an argument to be finished that reaching the final means this movement will be a success – win or lose at the Melbourne Cricket Ground.
But fail to become there and, frankly, not much will have changed since New Zealand and World Cup semi-final losses are unfortunate bedfellows.
Appears like a lot of pressure, not that captain McCullum will be conveying that once he delivers his final word to the troops.
“We talk a lot about this being the greatest time of our lives,” McCullum said.
“No different to any other game,” is the team’s mantra.
“The game is meant to be fun, go out there and express yourself, enjoy the occasion, and we’ll see where the cards fall after that.