Women’s cricket: Proteas shine against Kiwis


South Africa’s women’s cricket team produced one of the most remarkable comebacks in T20 cricket on Sunday in Benoni when the Proteas won the fifth T20 match at Willowmoore Park in dramatic fashion by 11 runs.

The Proteas scored 155/5 in their 20 overs and restricted New Zealand to 144/8.

The series ended with a 1-1 draw.

The Kiwis, who won Saturday’s fourth match at Willowmoore Park by eight wickets, were on course for an easy victory at 117/1 after 15.4 overs with Amelia Kerr and Suzie Bates in front of the wickets. They were just 38 runs short of victory, but then they lost their heads completely after Bates was out with the next ball.

A dramatic batting collapse, where seven wickets fell for just 27 runs, gave the Proteas the victory.

The heroes were Nadine de Klerk (3/24), Masabata Klaas (3/26) and Ayabonga Khaka (1/23) who crushed the Kiwis with a series of streaky balls.

Kerr with 61 runs (46 balls, 9×4) and the experienced Bates with 45 (42 balls, 5×4) put the Kiwis on the road to victory with a partnership of 97 runs for the second wicket, but then the team imploded .

Nevertheless, Bates is now the batsman (4,021) with the most runs (men and women) in T20 cricket.

It’s a brilliant achievement, because she is ahead of Virat Kohli of India (4,008 runs) and other batting stars such as Rohit Sharma, Martin Guptill and Babar Azam.

In the Proteas’ innings of 155/5 in 20 overs, Tazmin Brits with 45 (38 balls, 5×4, 1×6) and Laura Wolfaardt (24) laid the foundation with an opening partnership of 36 runs in 5 overs.

Sune Luus with 36 (23 balls, 5×4) and Anneke Bosch (28) built on this.

Molly Penfold (2/26) and Leah Tahuhu (2/20) turned the screws for the Kiwis.