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South Africa sail into Super 8s

Last updated on: May 06, 2010 06:04 IST

- Scorecard

South Africa crushed Afghanistan, bowling out the tournament debutants for 80, to win by 59 runs and take their place in the Super Eight stage of the Twenty20 World Cup on Wednesday.

The result eliminates Afghanistan from the tournament, but the team representing the war-torn country can take encouragement from an aggressive and enthusiastic bowling display that restricted South Africa to a modest score of 139 for seven.

Graeme Smith (27) and Jacques Kallis (34) provided the backbone to a largely unconvincing South African batting display but their fast bowlers proved far too much for a team making their first appearance in a major tournament.

The result means that none of the unfavoured teams, Zimbabwe, Bangladesh, Ireland or Afghanistan, advanced from the group stage of the competition.

The Afghan batting display showed a gulf in technique and experience as the top order proved unable to cope with pace, with Morne Morkel taking four wickets in three devastating overs.

At times, the Afghan batsmen looked unnerved by the pace and bounce of the Kensington Oval pitch and none of their top seven Afghan batsmen made double figures.

They slumped to 25 for seven before Mirwais Ashraf restored some pride and provided the crowd with some excitement, hitting two sixes in his spirited 23 from 25 balls.

Hamid Hassan, who had earlier bowled superbly taking three wickets for 21 run from his four overs and showed himself to be an accomplished "death bowler" bowling a full length with his in-swing, clobbered two more sixes in his cameo off 22.

South Africa have little time to reflect on their win -- they face New Zealand on Thursday following the opening Super Eight game between England and Pakistan.

Earlier in the day, Australia produced a clinical performance to beat Bangladesh by 27 runs and qualify for the Super Eights.

They rode on Michael Hussey's unbeaten 47 and Dirk Nannes's four-wicket haul to finish their group campaign on an unbeaten note, having defeated title-holders Pakistan by 34 runs in their opening match.

Australia join Pakistan from Group A in the Super Eight stage and will take on India in their opening second round encounter on Friday.

Source:
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