Third One-Day International

South Africa v New Zealand 2007-08

At Cape Town, December 2, 2007. South Africa won by five wickets. Toss: New Zealand.

Herschelle Gibbs scored an absurdly dominant century to make a mockery of a contest for which New Zealand had widely been billed as favourites, given their emphatic win two days earlier. "We were beaten by one man today," said Vettori after his 200th one-day international for New Zealand. "It was one of the best one-day hundreds I've ever seen." Earlier, Steyn had reduced the tourists to 27 for two after his belated call-up for his first match of the series, and they were on the back foot after that. Styris again anchored the middle order with a workmanlike 60, before Sinclair added the oomph to reach a defendable score. When South Africa's chase began, expectations of a close contest were high; but Gibbs ended them, zooming to 50 from 40 balls. His 19th one-day hundred required just 77 deliveries, and in all he hit ten fours and seven sixes. He enjoyed some luck early on, but innings such as this usually do. Nothing was actually dropped, but a couple of slices to the outfield barely evaded fielders, and an edge or two beat keeper and slip. But in between, some of the more audacious and contemptuous shots of modern times - flicks, cuts and lashes over extra cover - were on full display.

Man of the Match: H. H. Gibbs. Man of the Series: K. D. Mills.

© Wisden Cricketers' Almanack