Proteas Women and Durban-born stars, Chloé Tryon and Nonkululeko Mlaba impressed with bat and ball, respectively, as South Africa wrapped up an emphatic 65-run triumph over New Zealand to pick up their first two points in the ICC Women’s T20 World Cup in Paarl on Monday.
Tryon continued her fine run of form with the bat to notch up a vital 34-ball 40 to help the Proteas post a competitive 132 / 6 before Mlaba led the charge in a clinical bowling performance with figures of three for 10 as the White Ferns were bowled out for 67 with 11 balls to spare.
South Africa won the toss and elected to bat first, with openers Laura Wolvaardt and Tazmin Brits (1) looking to set the tone early on before spinner Eden Carson (2 / 23) struck in the first over to trap the latter LBW.
The Proteas’ start was further curtailed by another top-order departure as all-rounder, Marizanne Kapp (9) was caught at mid-off while attempting her third boundary-finding shot, to leave the home side 13 / 2 in the third over.
It was then a solid third wicket stand between Wolvaardt and Suné Luus worth 33 runs that helped the Proteas regain control with the bat before disaster struck again, with Luus caught short of the crease while taking a quick single as she departed for an eventful 22 that included four fours.
Wolvaardt tried her best to keep the South African innings ticking but she was eventually sent back to the dugout, clean bowled by Lea Tahuhu (2 / 27) for 13. New batter, Delmi Tucker, who replaced Anneke Bosch in the playing XI, didn’t last longer either, as she became Carson’s second scalp of the evening.
With the score on 78 / 5, the red-hot duo of Tryon and Nadine de Klerk (28*) combined well for the home side to help take South Africa into triple figures with a pivotal 47-run, sixth wicket partnership led by Tryon’s 40 off 34 balls (6 fours) before the all-rounder was dismissed in the final over.
South Africa eventually finished on 132 / 6 after their allotted 20 overs, with Carson and Tahuhu nabbing two wickets apiece for New Zealand.
With the ball, the Proteas Women couldn’t have asked for a better start as left-arm spinner Mlaba ripped through the Kiwi openers Bernadine Bezuidenhout (0) and Suzie Bates (0) to leave the visitors reeling on 7 / 2 in the fourth over.
With South Africa’s tails up in the field, Kapp (2 / 13) and Ayabonga Khaka (1 / 9) joined the wicket-taking party as they claimed the scalps of Georgia Plimmer (7) and Amelia Kerr (10).
Despite a valiant effort from skipper Sophie Devine (16) in a partnership with Maddy Green (7), South Africa’s bowlers and fielders refused to ease the pressure on the opposing batters. Tryon’s right-arm spin removed both batters before a third wicket for Mlaba, a run out and a Shabnim Ismail (1 / 7) wicket looked to all but confirm the result for the home side in front of a packed Boland Park.
Kapp picked up the final wicket of the New Zealand innings as South Africa completed a successful response after the opening match defeat against Sri Lanka last Friday.
The hosts will now travel to Gqeberha for a mouth-watering clash against defending champions and five-time winners, Australia, taking place on Saturday, 18 February at 19h00 (SAST) at St George’s Park.
(Photo by Jan Kruger-ICC/ICC via Getty Images)