All-round Devine stars in New Zealand win over South Africa
New Zealand gets its campaign back on track after shock loss to West Indies
Sophie Devine's fine all-round performance helped New Zealand beat South Africa easily.
After a shock defeat to the West Indies, New Zealand got its campaign back on track at the ICC Women's World Twenty20 with a 22-run win over South Africa in Galle on Friday (September 28).
The batting, which suffered an unfamiliar collapse against the West Indies where it was restricted to 117, put together a formidable 151 for five in 20 overs after being put in to bat by South Africa. The innings was propelled by Sophie Devine and Frances Mackay, who put together a 94-run stand for the third wicket after Susan Benade's double strike reduced New Zealand to 24 for two in the fourth over.
Devine, who made 59 off just 46 balls, registered her maiden T20I fifty. Her knock was studded with five fours and three sixes, while Mackay was happy to rotate the strike and play second fiddle. After Devine's dismissal, Mackay opened up and made her way through to 49 before being dismissed off the penultimate over of the innings. Dan van Niekerk and Benade picked up two wickets each.
South Africa always found it tough staying abreast of the asking rate. Chasing 151, it needed the top-order to fire. Shandre Fritz and Trisha Chetty, the openers, were dismissed cheaply as South Africa was reduced to 15 for two. Alison Hodgkinson and Benade set about repairing the innings. While they looked to stitch together a partnership, the required rate steadily escalated and went past 8.5 an over, which forced Benade to up the ante, and in the process fall to the medium pace of Nicola Brown.
Benade made a quickfire 24 with two fours and two sixes. Hodgkinson too looked in good form till she was dismissed for 31 by Mackay as South Africa lost half its side for 71. Sensing an opportunity to close the game out, Suzie Bates, the New Zealand captain, attacked and brought the field in. That forced South Africa to take some risks. While it succeeded in getting a few over the in-field, the task at hand proved to be a little too steep.
Niekerk swung her bat around for a little while to end unbeaten on 34, but she was merely delaying the inevitable as South Africa fell 22 runs short.
Browne was the pick of the bowlers with figures of three for 13, while Devine had two.