Cricket World Cup: South Africa cruise into semis

JP Duminy celebrates dismissing Sri Lanka's Tharindu Kaushal on his way to a hat'trick. Picture: Getty
JP Duminy celebrates dismissing Sri Lanka's Tharindu Kaushal on his way to a hat'trick. Picture: Getty
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Three consecutive deliveries from JP Duminy helped South Africa address quite a few concerns at the Cricket World Cup

Part-time off-spinner Duminy became the first South African, and only the eighth bowler overall, to register a hat-trick at the World Cup yesterday in a nine-wicket quarter-final thrashing of Sri Lanka at the SCG.

He took a wicket with the last delivery of the 33rd over, and two more on the first and second balls of his next over. It helped that leg-spinner Imran Tahir took a wicket in the over in between – one of his four wickets for the match – as Sri Lanka collapsed from 114 for four to 116 for eight in the space of nine deliveries.

The 1996 champions were dismissed for 133, and South Africa needed only 18 overs to achieve the winning target, and end their winless streak in World Cup knockout games.

“Pretty pleased with that performance. Don’t think I’ve ever come close to taking a hat-trick before,” Duminy said. “I knew it was possibly a hat-trick ball, just before I bowled it, so we got a few fielders in and, fortunately enough, he played around it.

“It was one of those days when everything clicks.”

South Africa’s bowlers certainly clicked. New-ball pacemen Kyle Abbott and Dale Steyn took out the opening Sri Lankan batsmen cheaply. Then the slow bowlers kicked in, and the runs began to dry up. Tahir weaved his usual magic to claim four for 26, and Duminy’s stunning spell earned three for 29.

A much-needed half-century for Quinton de Kock then carried South Africa to victory.

De Kock had made only 53 runs in his previous six innings in the tournament, a tally he surpassed in this 
innings alone with 78 not out as his side cruised to their target for the loss of only one wicket.