At the ICC Women's T20 World Cup 2023, the tournament hosts South Africa outperformed themselves to defeat Group 1 rivals New Zealand and maintain their chances of reaching the semifinals.
South Africa was in shock after losing to Sri Lanka on the first day and realized they would need to defeat at least one of Australia or New Zealand and possibly both to advance to the final four.
Furthermore, the Proteas significantly increased their chances of making it to the semi-finals with an outstanding performance against a New Zealand team that has now lost two games by a large margin.
Nonkululeko Mlaba ignited the Powerplay and dismissed New Zealand's both openers, meaning the White Ferns have returned 0/4 from their opening batters so far in the game.
The Proteas had won the toss and elected to bat first in an effort to build on the example set by Ireland and England in the earlier game played on this ground, in which runs flowed during both Powerplays.
The home team had some early momentum, but early wickets stifled it.
As New Zealand chose to start with spin first up, Tazmin Brits was the one who was out in the first over after being caught lbw by Eden Carson. When she mistimed her shot off Lea Tahuhu and it went straight to Jess Kerr for nine (10 balls), Marizanne Kapp followed the Brits back to the dugout.
When New Zealand lost their openers in the first over for the second time in a row, it was like deja vu. Suzie Bates and Bernadine Bezuidenhout were fired by Nonkululeko Mlaba after each received two-ball ducks. New Zealand never recovered after that.
The top individual score for the Kiwis came from captain Sophie Devine of New Zealand, who scored 16. Mlaba finished with three wickets for South Africa, Kapp and Tryon each claimed two, and Shabnim Ismail claimed one.
South Africa, third in Group 1, next play Australia on February 18, while New Zealand take on Bangladesh on February 17.
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