Pool B - 2003 World Cup

South Africa v New Zealand

At Johannesburg, February 16, 2003. New Zealand won by nine wickets (D/L method). Toss: South Africa.

An innings of rumbustious flamboyance from Gibbs was upstaged by one of graceful power by Fleming, who hit a career-best unbeaten 134 to stun a capacity crowd into near silence. In 191 previous one-day internationals, Fleming had managed just three centuries, but now, when his team needed him most, he played the innings of his life: after defeat to Sri Lanka and with their game in Kenya likely to be forfeited, New Zealand simply had to win. They did it in style, to leave the hosts on the brink of elimination. New Zealand's first one-day away win against South Africa (at the ninth attempt) had looked a distant prospect after Gibbs - mixing dash with luck - raced to 143 in 141 balls, before a 21-ball whirlwind from Klusener helped South Africa to 306. On an ideal batting pitch, Fleming moved to a run-a-ball fifty with four consecutive fours off Kallis before surviving a simple chance high to Boucher's left on 53. McMillan fell soon after, but Fleming made South Africa pay with a string of exquisite on-drives and less characteristic cuts. A 15-minute power failure was followed by two rain breaks, which brought Duckworth/Lewis into play at 182 for one in the 31st over. The recalculation meant New Zealand needed 44 in eight and a half overs for a famous win. Astle, almost anonymous, finished unbeaten on 54, but this was Fleming's match. By the time he had crashed the winning four off the ailing Donald, Fleming had faced 132 balls and hit 21 of New Zealand's 27 boundaries. He had never played better.

Man of the Match: S. P. Fleming. Attendance: 31,326.

© John Wisden & Co