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Proteas hold nerve to beat West Indies

SOUTH Africa held its nerve in the face of some dazzling stroke play from Lendl Simmons to defeat the West Indies by 20 runs in their Twenty20 World Cup second-round match at the Oval in London yesterday.

Simmons played with fluency and flair on both sides of the wicket as the West Indies launched a spirited assault on South Africa's 183 for seven.

But his dismissal for 77 from 50 deliveries with the score on 133 from the final ball of the 16th over signalled the beginning of the end for the Windies. The last five wickets fell for 26 runs to leave the Caribbean team 163 for nine.

Left-arm pace bowler Wayne Parnell confirmed the fine impression he has made throughout the tournament, taking two wickets at the start of the West Indies innings from four deliveries. They included West Indies' captain Chris Gayle for five.

The 19-year-old returned at the end of the innings to claim two further wickets and finish with the excellent figures of four for 13.

South Africa made a good start but lost its way after Herschelle Gibbs departed for 55 from 35 balls in the 15th over, including a huge six over wide long-on off Simmons.

On Friday, Dwayne Bravo produced a tremendous performance with bat and ball to help the West Indies register an upset win over defending champion India at Lord's, London.

Bravo followed up his 4-38 in India's 153 for seven with an unbeaten 66 off 36 balls, ending the match with a flourish by lofting Zaheer Khan for six over extra-cover. The West Indies won by seven wickets with eight balls to spare.

India struggled from the outset after electing to bat in its first Super Eight match against some express bowling from Fidel Edwards. Edwards regularly exceeded 145 kilometers an hour during his opening spell from the Pavilion End, taking two early wickets as India managed only 40 runs from the opening six overs when the fielding restrictions were in place.


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