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AB pounces, but also drops

ESPNcricinfo presents the plays of the day from the fourth one-day international which turned into a gripping contest

Firdose Moonda
Firdose Moonda
Human, after all? AB de Villiers dropped Andre Russell at slip on 40  •  Gallo Images

Human, after all? AB de Villiers dropped Andre Russell at slip on 40  •  Gallo Images

Getting in Gayle's way
Usually not advisable to do this but Darren Sammy had no choice. When Sheldon Cottrell found the edge of Rilee Rossouw's bat with a hint of away swing, the ball threatened to die before reaching Gayle at first slip. Sammy was a step ahead and knew that if he moved quickly enough, he could snatch before it reached the floor. Sammy dived across Gayle and took a stunning catch to give West Indies the early advantage.
Getting in Gayle's way again
If Gayle thought his view was obscured once, he much more in his way when Cottrell took his next wicket. The left-armer invited Morne van Wyk to chase a short, wide delivery but van Wyk was hesitant with his shot selection. He half cut, half drove and ended up edging but the ball was flying fast and Denesh Ramdin had to go for it one-handed to have any chance of taking it. He flung himself across Gayle to compete a smart grab.
Six or out
Leon Johnson scored just 10 runs off the first 27 balls he faced and needed to get a move on. He chose Wayne Parnell as the man to try and do that against but top-edged a pull shot and sent the ball swirling in the direction of deep square leg. JP Duminy positioned himself well to collect it and did but his own momentum took him onto the boundary. He did his best to stop himself from going over it and ending up touching it with his foot to concede six runs and prolong Johnson's stay at the crease.
AB the fielder
But not for too long. Johnson faced another 12 balls before his luck ran out. His scoring rate had not quickened much and when he pushed an Aaron Phangiso delivery to cover and wanted to sneak a single but Marlon Samuels sent him back. AB de Villiers was quick to pounce on the ball and fire a low, accurate throw straight to Morne van Wyk, who was standing by for exactly that. He broke the stumps before Johnson could get back to complete the run-out that reminded de Villiers in the field may be worth more than he is behind the stumps.
It seems to be one of the problems West Indies are experiencing in their dressing room and it bled onto the field in this innings too. Jonathan Carter thought a run was on when Samuels hit a ball to mid-on but after being reminded of South Africa's prowess in the field earlier, Samuels was having none of it. Carter had just about reached his end, when Samuels sent him back but it was too late. Duminy only had to walk to the stumps and break them and Carter could keep walking.
Miller time
Duminy did not deserve a wicket off a leg-side low-full toss and Jason Holder would have known that when he clipped the ball in midwicket's direction but instead of going over the fielder, he found Miller. As if he had not done enough with the bat, Miller committed himself to jumping with one arm above his head and timed it perfectly.
It's not often that de Villiers makes a mistake on a cricket field. It's far less often that the mistake has anything to with fielding. West Indies needed 26 runs off the last four overs when de Villiers moved himself to slip and it proved an excellent decision. Carlos Brathwaite edged straight to him to present a regulation chance but the ball bounced out of de Villiers' hands although he did orchestrate Brathwaite's run-out off the first ball of the next over

Firdose Moonda is ESPNcricinfo's South Africa correspondent