SOUTH Africa inflicted a crushing 10-wicket defeat on Zimbabwe to book their place in the World Twenty20 Super Eights and knock their opponents out.
Report by BBC/Supersport
The impressive Jacques Kallis claimed 4-15 and Morne Morkel 2-16 to limit Zimbabwe to 93-8 in a hugely one-sided game in Hambantota.
South Africa overhauled a modest target with 7.2 overs to spare as Richard Levi helped himself to an unbeaten 50.
The result also secured Sri Lanka’s progress from Group C.
Zimbabwe, beaten in equally comprehensive fashion by Sri Lanka in the tournament opener on Tuesday, never threatened to defend their second lowest Twenty20 total.
Their competition lasted just three days and they return home before five of the 12 teams have played a game.
Jacques Kallis led the way as South Africa’s pacemen struck terror into the Zimbabwe batsmen.
South Africa’s prior encounters with Zimbabwe had ended in embarrassing defeats, but the difference this time was the tremendous strikepower that was available with Kallis, Morne Morkel and Dale Steyn all in action.
It was pros against amateurs as Craig Ervine (37 off 40) was the only batsman to score more than 15.
Kallis returned with new career-best figures of four for 15, tearing through the middle-order with three for three in his first two overs.
It was a good toss to win for South Africa as their fast bowlers revelled in the moist conditions after a heavy afternoon shower, and Morne Morkel (4-0-16-2) immediately justified the decision to send Zimbabwe in as he removed Vusi Sibanda (0) and Brendan Taylor (4) in his first two overs.
Sibanda was bowled by a superb delivery that jagged back through the gate to hit the top of off stump, while both Taylor and Hamilton Masakadza, who was caught off Albie Morkel for 6, erred in trying to manufacture strokes that the conditions did not allow.
Ervine produced a couple of beautiful strokes through the off side and Zimbabwe were dreaming of a comeback as he and Stuart Matsikenyeri added 35 for the fourth wicket.
But then Kallis, the man with the golden touch, seized control of the innings.
He didn’t have much to do with his first wicket, Matsikenyeri leaving his crease and slapping the ball straight to cover to be caught for 11, but Kallis’s next delivery was far too quick and straight for Elton Chigumbura, who stayed back and played all around it to be trapped lbw for a golden duck.
Graeme Cremer averted the hat-trick, but Kallis had his career-best figures three overs later when he surprised Cremer (6) with a bouncer that was gloved through to wicketkeeper AB de Villiers.
Prosper Utseya (5) was soon sent on his way by Steyn, South Africa’s bowling spearhead not disappointing with outstanding figures of one for nine in his four overs.
Ervine, the one Zimbabwean to emerge with some credit, was the last batsman to fall, caught behind as he failed to control a well-directed lifter from Kallis.
South Africa: Richard Levi, Hashim Amla, Jacques Kallis, AB de Villiers, JP Duminy, Farhaan Behardien, Albie Morkel, Johan Botha, Robin Peterson, Dale Steyn, Morne Morkel.
Zimbabwe: Hamilton Masa-kadza, Vusi Sibanda, Brendan Taylor, Craig Ervine, Stuart Matsikenyeri, Elton Chigumbura, Graeme Cremer, Prosper Utseya, Ray Price, Kyle Jarvis, Brian Vitori.