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Rediff.com  » Sports » Smith leads South Africa to easy win

Smith leads South Africa to easy win

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May 08, 2005 08:38 IST

Captain Graeme Smith struck his fourth century in successive matches to lead South Africa to a convincing eight-wicket victory over West Indies in the first of five One-Day Internationals on Saturday.

Chasing a victory target of 254 at Sabina Park, Smith shared an opening stand of 131 with Boeta Dippenaar (56) before reaching his fourth one-day century in his last eight one-dayers and guiding his team to the point of victory.

Having reached 103 from 100 balls with a boundary against part-time seamer Dwayne Smith, the South Africa captain drove wearily at a wide delivery from his namesake two balls later and was caught by wicket keeper Courtney Browne.

His innings included 13 fours.

Consecutive centuries in the final three Tests against the home side before the one-day series earned Smith the man-of-the-series award.

He was even more dominant at the start of the one-day series, though, as he played shots at will to all parts of the ground and against all bowlers.

Smith had earned the disdain of his opponents by demanding a public apology from Dwayne Bravo, who claimed the South Africa captain had racially abused him at the fourth Test in Antigua.

Smith was cleared of a charge of breaching the International Cricket Council code of conduct by match referee Jeff Crowe after a hearing.

However, his century on Saturday did not receive a single handclap from the West Indians.

MORE DEVASTATING

Only 64 runs were required for victory when Smith was dismissed and Jacques Kallis made certain there were no late alarms with an unbeaten 51 at the close from 68 balls with two fours as South Africa reached 255-2 from just 45 overs.

Herschelle Gibbs was even more devastating in the closing overs with an imperious, unbeaten 40 from just 36 balls with three fours and two sixes.

Fast bowler Makhaya Ntini also played a crucial role in setting up victory with an inspired spell of 4-46 that started with the early wickets of both openers.

That included the ever-dangerous Chris Gayle, who scored 317 against the tourists in the fourth and final Test less than a week ago.

Ntini bowled Wavell Hinds for five while Gayle fell for 26 to a breathtaking, one-handed catch by Hershelle Gibbs in the covers.

Brian Lara was in the mood to rebuild steadily until a full length delivery from Andre Nel tempted him to flick airily into the leg side where Boeta Dippenaar held a regulation catch on the boundary.

The former West Indies captain made just eight runs from 20 deliveries.

Ramnaresh Sarwan reached a patient half century from 89 deliveries and added 106 for the fourth wicket with Shivnarine Chanderpaul to rescue the innings from 56-3 to 162-3 before the latter edged Ntini to wicketkeeper Mark Boucher for 49.

Sarwan hit off spinner Smith for a towering six over midwicket as the acceleration began before Shaun Pollock, once a genuine fast bowler but now medium pace, endured the bitter-sweet experience of having Sarwan stumped down the leg side.

Sarwan's 72 came from 111 deliveries and contained three fours and a six.

Dwayne Smith showed his precocious talent during a whirlwind innings of 46 from just 37 deliveries, including four boundaries and two sixes, all through, or over, the leg side field.

Scoreboard

West Indies:
C. Gayle c Gibbs b Ntini 26
W. Hinds b Ntini 5
R. Sarwan st Boucher b Pollock 72
B. Lara c Dippenaar b Nel 8
S. Chanderpaul c Boucher b Ntini 49
D. Smith b Langeveldt 46
D. Bravo c Nel b Ntini 14
C. Browne not out 9
I. Bradshaw c Pollock b Nel 2
P. Collins run out 2
C. Collymore b Langeveldt 0

Extras: (lb-6, nb-5, w-9) 20

Total: (all out, 48.5 overs) 253

Fall of wickets: 1-29, 2-38, 3-56, 4-162, 5-191, 6-232, 7-241, 8-244, 9-253, 10-253

Bowling: Pollock 9-0-51-1 (nb-2 w-2), Ntini 10-2-46-4, Langeveldt 9.5-2-41-2 (nb-1 w-3), Nel 9-0-43-2 (w-2), Kallis 5-0-26-0 (w-2), Smith 6-0-40-0 (nb-2).

South Africa:

G. Smith c Browne b Dw. Smith 103
B. Dippenaar b W. Hinds 56
J. Kallis not out 51
H. Gibbs not out 40

Extras: (lb-1, nb-4) 5

Total: (for 2 wickets, 45 overs) 255

Fall of wickets: 1-131, 2-190.

Did not bat: J. Kemp, A. Prince, S. Pollock, M. Boucher, C. Langeveldt, A. Nel, M. Ntini.

Bowling: Collins 9-0-57-0 (nb-4), Bradshaw 9-0-38-0, Collymore 7-0-46-0, Gayle 7-0-33-0, Bravo 4-0-34-0, W. Hinds 6-0-25-1, Dw. Smith 3-0-21-1.

Source:
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