AB de Villiers’ 162* Leads South Africa to Dominant Victory over West Indies

AB de Villiers’ record-breaking 162* off 66 balls catapulted South Africa to a commanding 257-run triumph over West Indies in a World Cup showdown.

This remarkable feat not only secured a resounding victory for South Africa but also etched new milestones in cricket history.

AB de Villiers’ 162* Leads South Africa to Dominant Victory over West Indies

West Indies 151 (Holder 56, Tahir 5-45) lost to South Africa 408 for 5 (De Villiers 162*, Amla 65, du Plessis 62, Rossouw 61, Holder 1-104) by 257 runs.

By now, the West Indies must be tired of South Africa and AB de Villiers. If breaking all those records in Johannesburg earlier this year wasn’t embarrassing enough, South Africa came back to do it again, this time during a World Cup tournament. The most noteworthy of those were de Villiers smashing the fastest 150 in ODIs, 261 runs in the final 20 overs, a World Cup record and second only to the Johannesburg loot in all ODIs, and the highest team total on Australian soil, an incredible 408 on a slow, somewhat two-paced pitch, which may surprise you.

West Indies lost by a shared lowest World Cup margin, despite de Villiers’s superior scoring total. Should the outcome come down to net run-rate, Pakistan and Ireland will benefit.

In ODI cricket, De Villiers now holds the quickest fifty, hundred, and 150-run streaks (all against the West Indies), and the fastest double is not far behind. There are those who argue that the West Indies did themselves a favor by choosing not to use a slip when Hashim Amla and Faf du Plessis were putting on a steady 127 in 23.4 overs.

West Indies may have introduced the lower middle order sooner if they had been less satisfied with the pre-storm quiet and more impatient. Based on the final carnage, that may not have been the best thing for the West Indies.

When the ball wasn’t coming on and the West Indies were bowling well at the top of the innings, Amla and du Plessis played crucial innings. In the same over, Chris Gayle removed both Amla and du Plessis, but Rossouw went one better and did not let up. With 39, he scored 61. On the day that de Villiers demonstrated that there isn’t a better front-runner in modern cricket, all three will, however, be relegated to the status of footnotes.

This entire innings had followed the unsettlingly common pattern amongst larger teams, where the new fielding regulations allow the batsmen to explode after the first 30 overs of the first innings, and the pitch has little left for the bowlers. Eventually, the only ways to combat it are to either keep picking up wickets or excel at bowling defense.

In the first middle overs, West Indies didn’t really go out of their way to capture wickets, and ultimately, their bowlers wilted. But in a little moment, de Villiers’ hitting—a triumph of creativity and conventional wisdom—managed to inject some magic into what is fast becoming ordinary.

The theft started when Rossouw and de Villiers, who were batting first rather than chasing, when their team usually struggles, displayed none of the caution that marked their loss to India. In 12.3 overs, the two added 134 runs.

Throughout the partnership, West Indies could muster just 12 points, with none coming in the crucial Powerplay that cost them 72 runs. At one point in time, Rossouw and de Villiers matched each other not just in terms of strokes but also in terms of statistics: at 55 off 34, with five fours and a six apiece. You don’t want to be a part of that double whammy.

Also Read: AB de Villiers Smashes ODI Century Record of Just 31 Balls

The genuine, pure mayhem was still to come, but West Indies managed to halt the possibility of double hundreds by sending Rossouw back with the score at 280 in the 43rd over. The West Indies managed to keep South Africa at 330 at the conclusion of the 47th over, which even brought them some relative peace. De Villiers hadn’t yet found peak speed, with a 95 off 50.

Jason Holder now introduced himself. Twice had he bowled a maiden. taken de Kock’s wicket. only 40 in eight were given up. Just nine in five overs at one point. Consider the pressure that the once-intimidating side’s 23-year-old captain is under now.

Holder went for 34 runs in the 48th over after bowling two no-balls and length deliveries in a complete collapse. There was good reason for the intimidation.

But De Villiers was simply enjoying himself, racing down the ground, over fine leg, and reversing over deliveries from third men that were pitched in nearly the exact same areas.

In the subsequent over, Andre Russell struck it lucky by bowling Farhaan Behardien’s first three deliveries for just nine runs. Poor Holder, he began the final over to de Villiers once more. He continued to feed that driving groove, and in that over, de Villiers continued to inflict pain on him for another thirty.

AB reached his 150 off the 64th ball he faced after reaching his 100 off the 52nd ball he faced, two balls short of Kevin O’Brien’s World Cup record. and then concluded the innings with back-to-back sixes to celebrate. Holder has now given up 104, the worst 10-over analysis in World Cup history and the fifth-worst total.

It’s hard to blame a team for becoming discouraged following so many humiliations. The fight was going to be limited after Kyle Abbott removed Gayle early with an outswinger that struck the top of the leg stump; this was further diminished by Imran Tahir’s legspin and superb fielding. Holder found some solace in the fact that his 56 off 48 helped the West Indies escape their biggest ODI loss to date.

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