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USA V South Africa: T20 Cricket World Cup – Live

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15th over: USA 122-5 (Gous 53, Singh 17 )Andries Gous comes to life, his innings has been a curious mix of complete dormancy and then little flurries of boundary hitting. He drives down the ground for four and then marmalises a SIX off a full toss down the ground for a SIX. And another! A length ball is clubbed over the leg side for another SIX. NINETEEN runs off the over and fifty for Gous. They couldn’t, could they?

14th over: USA 103-5 (Gous 35, Singh 16) The required rate is above FIFTEEN an over now. South Africa go for the kill by bringing back Anrich Nortje.

13th over: USA 99-5 (Gous 33, Singh 14) Maharaj is a bit too full, sure enough a half volley allows Singh to get his bat under the ball and lift it away with the breeze for SIX.

12th over: USA 87-5 (Gous 29, Singh 6) Harmeet Singh joins Gous in the middle with USA in all sorts of strife, they are looking a thumping loss square in the eyes here. Gous gives their NRR a bit of a shot in the arm with a nice loft down the ground for four. Singh gets four more by sweeping a poor ball behind square. Eleven off the over, and the wicket. A lot needed off not very many though.

WICKET! Shayan Jahangir lbw b Shamsi 3 (USA 76-5)Tabraiz Shamsi given the nod for some wrist spin – strikes first ball! Jahangir reviews the thoroughly adjacent LBW decision more in hope than judgement but three reds sees him on his way.

11th over: USA 76-4 (Gous 24, Jahangir 3) Maharaj is miserly. Just three singles off the over and the run rate now over THIRTEEN an over. Less a curious cobra and more a downright nosy one. Do snakes have noses? They have nostrils, but no actual nose? One to ponder, probably at another time. Probably.

10th over: USA 73-4 (Gous 23, Jahangir 1) Shayan Jahangir is the new batter, he manages to get some bat on a nasty ball in at the mid-riff, dropping away for a single. Ten overs done and time for a drink. Or, for me, time to drop a grubby three year old into the bath. Game slipping away for USA.

*There is another adult in the house, promise.

WICKET! Anderson b Nortje 12 (USA 71-4)Corey Anderson slams a Nortje slower ball over the leg side fence for SIX but the big fast bowler has the last laugh with the next ball. A searing yorker ripping the leg stump out of the ground. Emphatically out!

South Africa’s Anrich Nortje (left) celebrates with teammate Kagiso Rabada after the dismissal of United States’ Corey Anderson. Photograph: Ricardo Mazalán/AP9th over: USA 65-3 (Gous 23, Anderson 5) Singles the order of the day off Maharaj but it ain’t enough for USA. Five off the over and the run rate rising like a curious cobra. 130 runs needed from 66 balls…

8th over: USA 60-3 (Gous 21, Anderson 3) Decent start from Nortje, he too is sporting a some top lip furniture. I’m in good company – have been growing my own for a few weeks now. In my head I’m Robert Redford as The Sundance Kid. In reality? A bit nearer The Milkybar Kid. Good to get these things out of your system though I reckon.

Just three off the over as Nortje mixes up his pace and length skilfully.

7th over: USA 57-3 (Gous 20, Anderson 1) Corey Anderson joins Gous and gets off the mark with a tickle behind square. Anrich Nortje is coming into the attack for the first time today. Gulp.

WICKET! Jones c de Kock b Maharaj 0 (USA 56-3)HUGE blow for USA – their in form captain nicks off to Maharaj and is back in then hutch for a duck! The chance of an upset dwindling significantly with that wicket. Lovely, flighted delivery from Maharaj, turned just enough to take the edge of Jones’ blade.

6th over: USA 53-2 (Gous 17, Jones 0) Powerplay done. USA captain Aaron Jones comes out to the middle and Rabada keeps him honest with three dots to complete the over.

WICKET! Kumar c Stubbs b Rabada 8 (USA 53-2)Kumar shapes to play another elegant pick up shot off his pads but doesn’t get a big enough piece of it, the wind holding the ball up and Stubbs taking a decent tumbling catch. The Proteas celebrate with relish, they are being tested in Antigua.

5th over: USA 51-1 (Gous 16, Kumar 7) Seventeen runs off the fifth over! Marco Jansen goes full to Kumar who picks the ball off his pads with a flourish and times the undercrackers off it – the ball soaring into the crowd for SIX! Gous gets in on the action too – hopping out of his crease like a matador and smearing it away on the breeze for the second six of the over. USA making a decent fist of this.

4th over: USA 34-1 (Gous 6, Kumar 0) Nitish Kumar joins Gous in the middle and gets off strike immediately with a leg bye. Rabada has his dander up here – he nearly picks up Gous with a well directed short ball. Gous decides to tee off… but his wild swing connects only with Antiguan fresh air. Over bowled.

WICKET! Taylor c Klaasen b Rabada 24 (USA 33-1)Rabada strikes! Taylor tries to club a short ball but doesn’t get anywhere near enough on it, Klaasen taking a tumbling catch at mid-off. He looked in good nick did Steven Taylor – his side could’ve done with him hanging around for a few more overs.

Rabada replaces Markram. Shot! Gous comes alive with a lovely drive on the up for four. Proper criggit.

3rd over: USA 28-0 (Taylor 24, Gous 2) Jansen continues. A leg side wide to start. A full ball is driven handsomely down the ground by Taylor for four. Jansen responds with another wide. Eeeesht! Jansen spears in a short ball and it takes off from back of a length – de Kock just managing to pluck it out of the sky after it passes the batter. That’s the most we’ve seen extracted from this wicket today, Jansen bending his back in frustration. A full ball is inside edged for four by Taylor, Jansen frowns like a man sniffing off milk. Ten runs pocketed from the over. Decent start from the Americans.

2nd over: USA 18-0 (Taylor 16, Gous 1) Aidan Markram’s slow stuff to Steven Taylor. A dot to start… then WHACK. Taylor clears the front leg and smears for SIX over midwicket. Four more! A well played sweep – Taylor is evidently seeing it big. A couple of singles makes it thirteen off the over. USA up with the rate!

1st over: USA 5-0 (Taylor 5, Gous 0) The lissom limbed and tidy ‘tache sporting Marco Jansen with the first over. Boff. Steven Taylor smacks him through point for four off the first ball! A single brings his opening partner Andries Gous on strike. Gous doesn’t seem to have received the memo – facing out four dots including two shorter balls that he chooses to shoulder arms to. Play yerself in eh, Andries.

Here come the USA openers – can they make South Africa sweat a bit Antigua? We’re about to find out. Play!

Interval Reading:

Ali Martin has had a very interesting chat with Akeal Hosein:

With four wins from four after the group stage (before the England match), West Indies have been leaning into the anthem under Rovman Powell’s captaincy, his squad from seven different countries sharing the lyrics in their WhatsApp group before the tournament and united by its sentiment. The buzz on the islands visited these past two weeks has been pretty palpable, too; a sense something could be stirring for this unique multinational team and their public.

“The West Indies is still the ultimate goal for any young cricketer,” says Hosein. “Yes, there are franchise leagues and all of that. But the feeling of putting on the maroon, I don’t think there is a more special feeling than that. Once selected, everyone comes together, it’s just a great feeling. Comrades. Yeah, we’re from different countries but that’s what makes us more special. We all piece together the puzzle. And we have our home crowd behind us.”

South Africa set USA 195 to winKlaasen swivels on a short ball from Ali Khan and gets a big piece of it, the ball flying against the breeze for SIX. Two more follow as Klaasen does well to dig out a yorker and squeeze it away. Khan nails his yorker next ball but somehow Klaasen manages to scamper a single. Final ball to Tristan Stubbs… delightful! Stubbs gets down on his haucnhes and reverse ramps a full ball over the keeper for four. Fifteen runs off the final over – a formidable score on the board for South Africa.

20th over: South Africa 195-4 (Klaasen 36, Stubbs 20)

19th over: South Africa 179-4 (Klaasen 26, Stubbs 15) Netravalkar to bowl his final over. He’s unlucky with the first ball as Stubbs gets a genuine edge that evades the keeper and runs away for four. Stubbs moves around the crease trying to create room to swing his arms but Netravalkar is up to the task – stitching together four dots in a row to finish with 2-21 from his four overs. Sensational stuff, what a story he has been in this tournament.

18th over: South Africa 173-4 (Klaasen 26, Stubbs 9) Klaasen can hit a big ball. He’s got license here too. Ali Khan on to bowl. The batter misses out on a full toss, not timing it properly but keeps strike by scampering a couple. SIX! A half volley is not passed up – slammed over cover and into the stands. Twelve runs off the over in total as South Africa target 200. This target is already looking ominous for USA.

17th over: South Africa 161-4 (Klaasen 17, Stubbs 6) Right then. Jasdeep Singh is given the nod – his only over so far was clobbered for 28 runs. A full toss is played with restraint by Stubbs – choosing to place rather than plunder. Singh tries to hit the tramline but strays an inch outside consecutively to gift a couple of wides. Better from the bowler, Singh finds the blockhole and then foxes Stubbs with a well executed slower ball. Eight runs off the over, three to go…

16th over: South Africa 153-3 (Klaasen 15, Stubbs 2) Shot! Klaasen hangs back and somehow bunts Kenjige down the ground for SIX! Shades of Kohli in that stroke. Stubbs and Klaasen rotate strike well to make it twelve off the over. Four overs to go, the double wicket strike hasn’t hurt the Proteas too badly.

WICKET! Aiden Markram c Ali Khan b Netravalkar 46 (South Africa 141-4)Another fine catch! Ali Khan dives full length to scoop the ball just above the turf. Markram can’t believe it, he timed it too well if anything, the ball wasn’t supposed to make it out towards the boundary rider on the full. Decent spell this from USA.

15th over: South Africa 141-3 (Klaasen 5, Stubbs) Five overs to go. Tristan Stubbs joins Klaasen in the middle.

The USA’s main man Netravalkar is coming back for his third over. Crucial passage of play here. USA have been good in the field, they haven’t let their heads drop even when de Kock was teeing off.

14th over: South Africa 133-3 (Markram 40, Klaasen 3) Nosthush Kenjige back into the attack. Markram is still there after witnessing the wickets from the non-striker’s end last over. He can’t find the fence though as the run rate comes down a little. Six runs off the over.

13th over: South Africa 127-3 (Markram 35, Klaasen 1) Booo! Heinrich Klaasen blocks out the hat-trick ball and then works down to long on for a single. Two wickets and two runs in the over. USA have given themselves a sniff.

WICKET! David Miller c & b Harmeet Singh 0 (South Africa 126-3)Miller arrives and is on his way after one ball – patting back to Singh who takes a return catch at groin height. Two in two!

Harmeet Singh is on a hat-trick!

WICKET! de Kock c Shayan Jahangir b Harmeet Singh (South Africa 126-3)A full toss from Harmeet Singh is smeared into the wind by de Kock but doesn’t have the legs to clear the fence! Phewf. USA needed that.

USA’s Shayan Jahangir catches out South Africa’s Quinton de Kock during their T20 World Cup 2024 Super Eight match. Photograph: Andrew Caballero-Reynolds/AFP/Getty Images12th over: South Africa 125-1 (de Kock 74, Markram 35) Corey Anderson goes for the yorker but misses it by a fraction, enough for de Kock to crack his wrists on it and deposit the ball into the stand at cow corner. Some shot that. Gah – a full bunger is not what the USA needed – de Kock’s eyes light up as he finds the gap between point and third. Another boundary. QdK is flying – a lap over the keeper’s head for another four makes it seventeen runs off the over.

11th over: South Africa 108-1 (de Kock 59, Markram 33) Markram slashes Harmeet for four through point. USA need to break this partnership. Searing insight but it’s the truth. Seven off the over, Corey Anderson is coming on to bowl.

10th over: South Africa 101-1 (de Kock 58, Markram 27) Eight off the over, South Africa well placed at the halfway stage. Time for a quick slurp of something luminous (for the players).

9th over: South Africa 93-1 (de Kock 52, Markram 26) “Why does Quinton de Kock always look like he’s just received bad news about his cat?” Asks Gary Naylor, which admittedly induces a snort.

I can’t see his expression currently under his lid but he is now motoring – fifty up off 30 odd balls as South Africa take ten off the over. Maybe the flicker of a smile lurking under the helmet. The Proteas laying a solid foundation here in Antigua.

8th over: South Africa 83-1 (de Kock 45, Markram 24) Stephen Taylor into the attack and Aidan Markram comes to the party. Slamming a SIX over long on and reversing handsomely for four more. Fourteen runs off the over as the partnership grows and grows.

More jangly number eight stuff sent in courtesy of James Rennie. It’s only Wednesday afternoon Jimmyboy…

7th over: South Africa 69-1 (de Kock 43, Markram 12) Harmeet Singh into the attack. He puts the brakes on a little, just five runs off a warp speed over, six darts. Blink and you miss it.

6th over: South Africa 64-1 (de Kock 41, Markram 9) Ali Khan is given a second over after Jasdeep Singh’s mauling last over. A tidy over is ruined at the last by a scything blow from de Kock – SIX pongoed over midwicket. Eight runs off the over – QDK is purring ominously. South Africa’s best Powerplay in the tournament by some way.

5th over: South Africa 56-1 (de Kock 35, Markram 8) The left arm spin of Nosthush Kenjige. Around the wicket with a slightly stuttering action. Stop motion spinner. Three singles off the first four balls but the last two are too short and punished by de Kock. One swept fine and one cut through point.

4th over: South Africa 45-1 (de Kock 26, Markram 6) Jasdeep Singh is into the attack and it is a HUGE over for South Africa. 28 runs smashed off the over!

Markram pings a four through cover and then takes a single to bring Quinton on strike. A four is pulled through midwicket and the short stuff proves very expensive. Three consecutive sixes are launched into the stands by de Kock – one of them a free hit off a front foot no ball. Singh finishes the over with a dot and breathes a very heavy sigh. You and me both, pal. South Africa looking dangerous with the bat for the first time this tournament.

South Africa’s Quinton de Kock thwacks the ball over the boundary line for a six. Photograph: Ricardo Mazalán/AP3rd over: South Africa 17-1 (de Kock 4, Markram 1) Aidan Markram joins QdK in the middle and is off the mark with a glide to third. Netravalkar has 1-7 from his first two. Might be time to knock the coding on the head?

WICKET! Hendricks c Anderson b Netravalkar 11 (South Africa 16-1)U S A! Netravalkar strikes! Hendricks tries to smoke him down the ground but loses his shape – hand coming off the bat during the stroke. Corey Anderson clings on to a steepler. Just about. Then holds his palms out as if to say ‘what were you worried about’?’

Corey Anderson of USA takes the catch to dismiss Reeza Hendricks of South Africa Photograph: Jan Kruger/ICC/Getty Images2nd over: South Africa 13-0 (de Kock 3, Hendricks 9) Pace man Ali Khan from t’other end with a slip in place. He’s whippy and around the wicket. Action reminiscent of Fidel Edwards. de Kock is tied down somewhat, a handsome drive stopped by some excellent fielding in the ring, Shayan Jahangir with the acrobatics at backward point. No such trouble for Hendricks who steps out and swats a length ball over extra cover for SIX.

1st over: South Africa 3-0 (de Kock 2, Hendricks 1) Quinton de Kock and Reeza Hendricks are opening up for South Africa. Saurabh Netravalkar – one of the stars of the tournament so far – is going to start with the ball. His mightily impressive form continues. Just three runs off the over as six balls are landed on a postage stamp outside off. The Proteas have been decidedly quiet in the PowerPlay in this tournament. Another barely audible start. May as well crank us some Lavigne to get the blood pumping.

Righto, time for some play!

Gary Stableford has been in touch on the song front. Not so sure Gaz.

Can I make it any more obvious…

The teams are on the field singing the anthems – The Star Spangled Banner really belted out in Antigua.

Ramps has been enjoying the tournament so far. Though is worried about how often they come around:

The two teams take to the pitch. Photograph: Jan Kruger/ICC/Getty ImagesTeams:

This is the first game of the Super Eights*. In case you are wondering – all teams will start from scratch again, their previous games now have zero bearing.

*I’ve been singing it to the tune of this most of the day, getting the old mouth-Rickenbacker out for the intro of course.

Lots of good songs with eight in the title – Herman’s Hermits anyone?

I enjoyed this explainer from our American colleagues:

Could the US go all the way?Let’s not get greedy. They’ve done superbly to make it to the Super 8s, where they’ll face South Africa (19 June), the West Indies (21 June) and reigning champions England or Scotland (23 June). Still, there have been other upsets. Afghanistan crushed New Zealand and Canada overcame Ireland. Perhaps most importantly, being in the Super 8 guarantees the US a berth in the next T20 World Cup, to be held in Sri Lanka and India in 2026.

The US are coached by the former Australian batter, Stuart Law. The US’s star bowler, Saurabh Netravalkar, is a software engineer at Oracle. Netravalkar, 32, bowled the tie-breaking “super over” against Pakistan and took the wicket of Virat Kohli, the Indian superstar with 269m Instagram followers, though India won the match. Netravalkar was born in Mumbai and played for India under-19s. Batter and vice-captain Aaron Jones, born in Queens and raised in Barbados, smashed 10 sixes in the win over Canada. (A six, or a “dinger”, as Chuck would call it, is scored when a batter hits a fly ball over the boundary, similar to a home run.)

A USA fan gets his flag game going ahead of the match. Photograph: Andrew Caballero-Reynolds/AFP/Getty ImagesUSA win the toss and bowl firstSunny, hot and humid in Antigua. With what looks to be a strong breeze across the ground, shirts billowing, a toupée botherer. Shaun Pollock is in the middle and says he doesn’t think it will be a high scoring wicket (it’s the unused pitch number 5, for all you pitch nerds out there).

USA have won the toss and will bowl first. “We’re going to go with the extra spinner,” Aaron Jones says after calling the coin correctly. “I don’t think it’s (the pitch) is going to be too different to Dallas.”

Aidan Markram admits he wasn’t entirely sure what to do had he won the toss. “We would also have leaned towards bowling but we’re not too bothered with the result of the toss.”

I’ll post the teams in a sec.


James Wallace

In Pythagorean numerology the number eight represents victory, prosperity and overcoming. You knew that of course. The USA cricket team obviously did.

Hello and welcome to the OBO of the first game of the Super Eights in this T20 World Cup. Pakistan are on the plane home despite the timings of this fixture being earmarked by the ICC for subcontinent prime time time. That tells you something – nobody really expected the US to still be up and running, but that they are, and they’ve been one of the most exciting teams to watch in the tournament. Swatting aside Canada, holding their nerve against Pakistan and even causing a few wobbles in the mighty Indian batting line up.

South Africa are their opponents today, the Proteas have won all of their games… but not without incident. Having played three of their four matches on the tricksy New York wicket they’ve had a few scares along the way. Reduced to 12 for 4 hunting down 104 against the Dutch, winning by just four runs against Bangladesh and even squeakier – by a single run – against Nepal.

The Antigua pitch should suit the batters a bit more, but will by no means be a road. Let’s hope for a cracker to get the next phase of the tournament started.

Play begins in just over half an hour – 10:30am local time/ 3.30pm BST. If you are tuning in then do feel free to drop me a line – on Email or @Jimbo_Cricket.

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