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South Africa v Australia, 2nd ODI, Cape Town

Ntini destroys Australia with six of the best

The Report by Andrew McGlashan

March 3, 2006

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South Africa 289 for 7 (Gibbs 66, Kemp 51*) beat Australia 93 (Ntini 6-21) by 196 runs
Scorecard and ball-by-ball details
How they were out



Makhaya Ntini tore through the Australian top order with a four-wicket burst © Getty Images
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South Africa's revival continued apace at Cape Town as they inflicted a crushing 196-run defeat on Australia. The architects of South Africa's demolition job were Justin Kemp, with a crunching 41-ball 51, and Makhaya Ntini, who decimated the Australians with a career-best 6 for 22, the best figures by a South African in one-day internationals. Ntini's early burst of four wickets in three overs sent Australia tumbling to 7 for 4 and they eventually crashed for 93.

This winter-long contest has moved continents over the last few weeks but, so far, the cricket has been from a different planet. Australia are the side struck down by injuries, struggling with their bowling attack and generally not having the rub of the green. South Africa, meanwhile, have been transformed from the flat, lifeless side of the VB series.

For South Africa this series is about trying to lay some of the ghosts from the Australian tour to rest - and they are certainly making a decent fist of things. On Sunday it was Graeme Smith discarding the bad memories with a cathartic, match-winning century and, today, Kemp went through a similar process. The barnstorming half-century showed his true colours and helped South Africa garner 93 runs in final ten overs - chiefly with the support of Shaun Pollock in a 62-run stand off 44 balls.

The South African turn-around has also been characterised by Ntini, who missed the VB series with injury but has returned to add renewed vigour and bite to the attack. The destruction began with Ntini's first ball, as he cut Adam Gilchrist in half, then Phil Jaques drove loosely to second slip, where Kemp continued his fine day by pouching the catch with ease.

Ntini was running hot and none of the Australian batsmen were comfortable. After getting his first two scalps by pitching the ball up, he tested Damien Martyn with the bouncer and it was obligingly hooked straight to long leg. Bowling second at Newlands is always an advantage, but sides still have to make it count. Ntini, brilliantly supported by Pollock and Andre Nel, ensured there was no let-up on the Australians, who also didn't help their own cause with some shots they will wish had stayed in the pavilion.

Mike Hussey has engineered some remarkable Australian rearguards already this year, but salvaging this wreck was beyond even him. It took all his ability just to repel the South African seamers and boundaries were few and far between. When Australia had lost their first four wickets Simon Katich was still to get off the mark - his innings resembled something from a Test match rather than the one-day arena - and he was undone by some extra bounce after a painful stay in the middle.



Justin Kemp blitzed the Australia bowlers with a 44-ball 51 © Getty Images
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Everything the South Africans touched continued to turn to gold as Hussey's attempts to make something from the mess were ended by a sharp catch a short midwicket. The catcher, Kemp, like South Africa, was just having one of those days.

He had earlier played the ideal end-of-innings knock to boost South Africa to a total that appeared out of their reach at the 40-over mark. Throughout the more sedate stage of the innings Australia had struck enough blows to stop any major acceleration.

However, South Africa pride themselves in having a long batting line-up and that depth allowed them to open their shoulders in the final ten overs. Pollock took the leading role, launching a ferocious assault against Stuart Clark, who had been the model of consistency in his first spell, carving him for 22 runs off his eighth over.

Kemp followed by dispatching the first two deliveries of Nathan Bracken's next over into the crowd and suddenly 34 runs in eight balls had transformed the complexion of the innings. And Kemp wasn't finished their, either. Clark disappeared over deep extra-cover before Brett Lee also got neck ache by watching the ball disappear back over his head.

The base that allowed the middle-order to express themselves was laid by Herschelle Gibbs, who stroked eight crisp boundaries to stabilise a top-order performance that had been wasteful in ideal batting conditions. He formed a sensible stand of 80 with Boucher, but when Brad Hogg removed them both within four overs 260 appeared the summit of South Africa's ambitions. Kemp, though, swung the balance of the match before Ntini took centre stage, powering his team to a thoroughly deserved 2-0 series lead. A wounded Australia is a dangerous team, but they have some serious work to do to get back into this series.

How they were out

Graeme Smith b Clark 24 (45 for 1)
Played around a good length ball on off stump

Boeta Dippeneaar b Watson 31 (57 for 2)
Inside edged a drive

AB de Villiers b Watson 18 (95 for 3)
Attempted an ugly swing to leg

Herschelle Gibbs c and b Hogg 66 (175 for 4)
Stepped down the pitch, chipped a catch back to bowler

Mark Boucher lbw b Hogg 42 (192 for 5)
Missed a sweep, hitting middle

Shaun Pollock c Clarke b Lee 38 (254 for 6)
Lofted to cover

Robin Peterson c Martyn b Clark 4 (262 for 7)
Squirted to backward point

Australia

Adam Gilchrist c Boucher b Ntini 0 (1 for 1)
Thin inside edge after ball seamed into the batsman

Phil Jaques c Kemp b Ntini 0 (1 for 2)
Thick edge to second slip

Damien Martyn c Dippenaar b Ntini 4 (5 for 3)
Hooked straight to long leg

Michael Clarke c Boucher b Ntini 1 (7 for 4)
Loose waft outside off stump

Simon Katich c de Villiers b Nel 16 (33 for 5)
Chased one that bounced, popped a catch to cover

Mike Hussey c Kemp b Nel 22 (57 for 6)
Pulled to midwicket, smart tumbling catch

Brad Hogg c Pollock b Peterson 6 (70 for 7)
Swung to deep midwicket

Brett Lee c Dippenaar b Nel 1 (71 for 8)
Upper cut to third man

Nathan Bracken c Boucher b Ntini 10 (86 for 9)
Regulation outside edge from a drive

Shane Watson c Boucher b Ntini 27 (93 all out)
Thin edge, playing away from body

Andrew McGlashan is editorial assistant of Cricinfo

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Andrew McGlashan Assistant Editor Andrew arrived at ESPNcricinfo via Manchester and Cape Town, after finding the assistant editor at a weak moment as he watched England's batting collapse in the Newlands Test. Andrew began his cricket writing as a freelance covering Lancashire during 2004 when they were relegated in the County Championship. In fact, they were top of the table when he began reporting on them but things went dramatically downhill. He likes to let people know that he is a supporter of county cricket, a fact his colleagues will testify to and bemoan in equal quantities.
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