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21 October 201413:15

De Villiers, Duminy steer South Africa home

New Zealand overwhelmed by six wickets despite Ronchi’s battling 99

De Villiers, Duminy steer South Africa home - Cricket News
South Africa beat New Zealand by six wickets in its first One-Day International in Mount Maunganui's Bay Oval on Tuesday (October 21).

Chasing 231, South Africa reached the target with 11 balls to spare and six wickets in hand, as AB de Villiers led the way with an unbeaten 89 from 85 balls.

JP Duminy was the other big contributor in South Africa’s batting effort, scoring an unbeaten 58 from 72 balls and putting together 139 runs with de Villiers for the unbroken fifth-wicket stand.

Earlier, New Zealand, asked to bat first, rode on Luke Ronchi’s 83-ball 99 to recover from 68 for 5 to post a respectable 230, even though it failed to last its full quota of overs, getting bowled out with 29 balls left in its innings. That was partly because Ronchi got very little support during his knock, Trent Boult the only one to give him company for any length of time as they put together 74 runs for the final wicket, a New Zealand record.

As such, the series serves as warm-up for the upcoming World Cup, to be jointly hosted by Australia and New Zealand. But there’s additional incentive for South Africa to do well, as it could go past Australia as the world's No. 1-ranked ODI team if it completes a 3-0 whitewash.

The New Zealand batsmen, playing their first ODI since January, looked rusty at the crease. They opened cautiously, with Jimmy Neesham taking until the third over to score the first boundary.

New Zealand slumped after that before Ronchi and Tom Latham (29) set about rebuilding the innings, only for their 67-run partnership to end when Quinton de Kock stumped Latham.

Ronchi continued to run out of partners and New Zealand sank to 156 for 9, with not much expected when Boult arrived at the crease. But he dug in for a 33 ball 22 before the innings ended with Vernon Philander, Morkel, Imran Tahir and Ryan McLaren all taking two wickets apiece.

South Africa received a minor scare when Boult dismissed de Kock and Faf du Plessis cheaply but the rest of the attack struggled for wickets. Riley Rossouw (26) and Hashim Amla (38) kept the scoreboard ticking over but failed to capitalise after making good starts. But de Villiers then lived up to his ranking as the No. 1 ODI batsman in the world, combining with Duminy to comfortably seal the victory.
The next match on Friday will also be played in Mount Maunganui, with the series wrapping up in Hamilton on October 27.

To see the scorecard and review the New Zealand v South Africa match in full, please click here.