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Match Facts: New Zealand v South Africa

South Africa looks to keep its ICC World Twenty20 hopes alive in its Group 1 clash against New Zealand

Match Facts: New Zealand v South Africa - Cricket News
Brendon McCullum needs 25 runs to become the first player to score 2,000 T20I runs.
Thanks to some fireworks from Brendon McCullum, New Zealand found itself ahead of the required rate against England before a thunderstorm cut its chase short on Saturday. 

South Africa, meanwhile, failed to get past Sri Lanka as its nightmares in ICC tournaments continue. 

Ahead of the clash between the two teams, here is a look at the facts and key battles.  

Facts:

South Africa has won eight and lost three of the previous T20Is against New Zealand.  
  
Martin Guptill has scored 300 runs in seven T20I innings against South Africa, which includes one of 10 centuries that have been recorded in T20Is.  

New Zealand has won five of its last six completed T20Is.
  
South Africa has lost its last four T20Is after winning five of the preceding six.  

AB de Villiers, stand-in captain against Sri Lanka, is the only South Africa player to have lead his team more than once and have a negative T20I win-loss record. South Africa has won five and lost six under his captaincy.

Approaching Milestones:

Brendon McCullum needs 25 runs to become the first player to score 2,000 T20I runs. 
 
Ross Taylor needs 20 runs to reach 1,000 T20I runs.  

Nathan McCullum, Dale Steyn and Morne Morkel need one wicket, two wickets and five wickets respectively to reach 50 T20I wickets.

Key Battles:

Corey Anderson v Imran Tahir 
 
Corey Anderson has enjoyed a rapid rise to become one of the most sought-after T20 players. This is despite him averaging 8.2 with the bat and 47.5 with the ball in T20Is. His explosive batting and brisk left-arm bowling has gained notoriety in ODI – and to a lesser extent Test cricket, but it is clear he is ideally suited to the shortest form of the game.  

He smashed the fastest ODI ton on New Year’s Day against West Indies, off just 36 balls, in what was a 21-over match. It was the batting of a T20 specialist – he hit 14 sixes in his unbeaten 131. New Zealand has some exciting T20 players and Anderson could be the special ingredient that pushes it towards the knockout stages.  

Imran Tahir took 3-26 from four overs in South Africa’s defeat against Sri Lanka and the veteran leg-spinner has a crucial role as his team’s principal wicket-taking spin option. His career T20I economy rate of 5.37 suggests Anderson and his fellow batsmen will have to work hard for their runs against Tahir.

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