Rassie van der Dussen smashed an unbeaten 94 and Aiden Markram made 52 not out in a brilliant display of power hitting as they steered South Africa to a commanding 189 for two in their final Group 1 Super 12 match of the ICC T20 World Cup against England here on Saturday.
Van der Dussen’s 60-ball unbeaten knock had five fours and six sixes while Markram struck two boundaries and four maximums off 25 deliveries during his unconquered innings as the duo shared 103 runs for the unbroken third wicket after South Africa were invited to bat.
The Proteas added 116 runs from the back-10, thanks to fireworks from van der Dussen and Markram.
South Sfrica now need to restrict England to 131 runs to qualify for the semifinals. South Africa needed a big win to push up their net run rate, but they made a slow start and on top of that, they lost their opener Reeza Hendricks (2), cleaned up by Moeen Ali in the third over.
The Proteas did not go hammer and tongs in the powerplay, by the end of which they were just 40 for 1. One-down van der Dussen was intent on taking the England bowlers and he was able to hit Chris Woakes for a six and a four in the sixth over.
Quinton de Kock (34) and van der Dussen were able to get the odd boundaries and South Africa reached to 73 for 1 at the halfway mark.
But just as the duo was looking ominous, England broke the partnership of 71 runs for the second wicket with Jason Roy taking an excellent diving catch of de Kock near the boundary of the bowling of Adil Rashid in the 12th over.
Van der Dussen was going great guns and he reached his 50 off 37 balls in the 13th over, before creaming Mark Wood for a six in the 13th over to raise South Africa’s 100.
South Africa were 118 for two at the end of the 15th over and form there on the fireworks started. Van der Dussen hit Woakes for two consecutive sixes and Markram got another maximum from the bowler as South Africa took 21 runs from the 16th over.
The Proteas scored 39 runs from the final three overs, out of which 16 came from the last over.
For England, Moeen Ali and Adil Rashid took a wicket each.
Eoin Morgan and his team-mates wore black arm bands in memory of former England player Alan Igglesden, who died recently died at age 57.
South Africa innings: Reeza Hendricks b Ali 2, Quinton de Kock c Roy b Rashid 34, Rassie van der Dussen not out 94, Aiden Markram not out 52; Extras: (B-1 LB-3 W-3) 7 Total: (For 2 wickets in 20 overs) 189
Fall of wickets: 1/15 2/86
Bowling: Moeen Ali 4-0-27-1, Chris Woakes 4-0-43-0, Adil Rashid 4-0-32-1, Chris Jordan 4-0-36-0, Mark Wood 4-0-47-0.