Kane Williamson’s unbeaten ton steers New Zealand to a hard-fought win over South Africa

New Zealand delivered a clinical performance with the bat and ball to beat South Africa in the 25th game of ICC Cricket World Cup played at Edgbaston Cricket Ground in Birmingham.

First, Kane Williamson’s side delivered an excellent effort with the ball to restrict South Africa to a modest score. In reply, Kane Williamson led from the front and produced an unbeaten century to steer New Zealand win the game by four wickets. With this result, New Zealand are currently at the top of league table with 9 points to their name.

Earlier in the day, New Zealand won the toss and opted to bowl first in overcast conditions. Quinton de Kock was dismissed by Trent Boult in the second over of the innings to provide crucial breakthrough for New Zealand.

Hashim Amla decided to dig deep and grind out a score on a surface that produce variable bounce. He put on a 50-run partnership with Captain Faf du Plessis in a bid to rebuild innings for South Africa. Pace bowler Lockie Ferguson bowled a searing yorker to get rid of du Plessis, who scored 23 off 35 balls with the help of four boundaries.

Aiden Markram came to the crease and had to work hard for his runs. He added 52 runs with Amla to see South Africa take the score beyond 100 runs in the 25th over of the innings. Amla brought up his half-century in 75 balls. Mitchell Santner finally managed to get his first wicket as Amla was cleaned up while trying to play extravagant shot to third man. Amla scored 55 off 83 balls with the help of four boundaries.

Markram also failed to capitalize on his good start and perished in the 32nd over of the innings. He scored 38 off 55 balls with the help of four boundaries. Rassie van der Dussen and David Miller came together at the crease and formed a crucial partnership for South Africa. The pair added 72 runs in space of 12 overs.

Miller looked in good touch with the bat and decided to up the ante by smashing a big six off Boult. He also smashed Lockie Ferguson for consecutive boundaries in a bid to score quick runs in the later stages of the innings. He scored 36 off 37 balls with the help of two fours and a six.

Rassie van der Dussen played exceedingly well and scored unbeaten 67 off 64 balls with the help of two fours and three sixes. Late flourish by van der Dussen saw South Africa post 241 for 6 in 49 overs.

Chasing 242 runs to win, Kagiso Rabada dismissed Colin Munro to provide crucial breakthrough for South Africa. Kane Williamson came to the crease and formed a 60-run partnership with Martin Guptill.

Kane Williamson scored unbeaten century to New Zealand register a four-wicket win over South Africa in a World Cup game played at Birmingham

Opening batsman Martin Guptill was looking in good touch with the bat before he walked onto his stumps to his see South Africa pick up their second wicket.

Guptill scored 35 off 59 balls with the help of five boundaries. Ross Taylor suffered a rare failure with the bat as New Zealand lose their third wicket in the 16th over of the innings.

Wicket-keeper batsman Tom Latham also perished for a low score to see New Zealand precariously placed at 80 for 4 after 18.1 overs. James Neesham came to the crease and decided to keep the scoreboard ticking for New Zealand. He added a crucial partnership of 57 runs with Kane Williamson.

All-rounder James Neesham was dismissed in the 33rd over of the innings. Chris Morris claimed three wickets of the innings to put South Africa on top in the game.

Captain Kane Williamson brought up his half-century off 72 balls. Colin de Grandhomme decided to take the attack to the South Africa. He smashed a couple of sixes off the bowling of Kagiso Rabada and Andile Phehlukwayo to put pressure back on South Africa. All-rounder Colin de Grandhomme scored 60 off 47 balls with the help of five fours and two sixes.

South Africa spilled crucial chances to see New Zealand get away with the game. Miller dropped a tough chance to give a repreive to de Grandhomme. Tahir also delivered a snorter to see Williamson get a thin outside edge but de  Kock did not appeal for the catch.

Williamson could have been run out on 77 runs when Miller failed to gather a throw from Rabada. With a few hiccups at the end, Williamson remained unbeaten till the end and smashed a splendid century to steer the side to a hard fought win over South Africa.

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