KIMBERLEY – A superb 80 from Mignon du Preez was the base for the Momentum Proteas to square their series 1-1 against New Zealand with a tense, four-wicket win in the second One-Day International (ODI) at the Diamond Oval in Kimberley on Tuesday.
Set 223 for victory, the South Africans were hardly troubled as they won with five balls to spare. Du Preez struck 10 fours in her 112-ball knock, before falling close to the end.
Sune Luus took her team over the line with an unbeaten 25 (34 balls, 2 fours) to give the hosts a win that not only levelled the seven-match contest but also went some way to banishing painful memories of their collapse in the first ODI.
After winning the toss and choosing to field first, they watched the White Ferns make 222/8, which came on account of some strong top-order batting.
Captain Suzie Bates top-scored with 66 (84 balls, 9 fours) and shared in an opening stand of 68 with Rachel Priest (31).
Number three, Amy Satterthwaite also hit 47, before the South Africans roared back into the contest.
Marizanne Kapp took 3/41, while there was one wicket each for skipper Dane van Niekerk (1/32), Chloe Tryon (1/41), Masabata Klaas (1/20) and Ayabonga Khaka (1/35) as the visiting middle and lower order was kept in check.
In their batting reply, Lara Goodall (13) and Lizelle Lee provided South Africa with a solid start of 47 in just eight overs. Lee was instrumental as she thumped to sixes and five fours in her run-a-ball 42.
Both were dismissed by the dangerous Morna Nielsen, who picked up five of the six wickets that fell with her 5/39.
A third-wicket stand of 58 between Du Preez and Van Niekerk (21) kept the hosts ahead of the run-rate.
Despite the captain falling with over 100 still to get and Tryon (4) following not long after, Kapp made 27 and then watched as Du Preez and Luus added a key 53 for the sixth-wicket that proved key to a home win.
The Momentum Proteas are now a point behind New Zealand on the ICC Women’s-Championship table, with the deciding game to come on Thursday. Only the first three results of the seven-match series are counted towards the World Cup qualifying competition.
Africa News Agency