Cricket World Cup 2011
Morkel, Kallis star for SA
Morne Morkel (Gallo)
Chennai - Morne Morkel grabbed three wickets and Jacques Kallis hit an unbeaten 49 as South Africa raced to an emphatic eight-wicket win over Zimbabwe in a World Cup warm-up match on Saturday.
Paceman Morkel took 3-16 and Pakistan-born leg-spinner Imran Tahir bagged 3-35 as Zimbabwe were dismissed for 152 after electing to bat in the day-night match in Chennai.
South Africa achieved the target with more than 26 overs to spare in the one-sided contest, with Hashim Amla (45), skipper Graeme Smith (41) and Kallis being the main run-scorers.
All-rounder Kallis, who missed a recent home one-day series against India due to a rib injury, did not bowl but smashed three sixes and as many fours in his 39-ball knock.
Amla played some handsome shots in his 33-ball cameo, hitting seven fours, while Smith hit one six and three fours in his 54-ball knock.
South Africa were earlier well-served by Morkel and Tahir, who did not allow Zimbabwe to build a big partnership with their disciplined spells.
The pair were backed by left-arm spinner Robin Peterson, who took two wickets, and off-spinner Johan Botha (1-18).
Opener Brendan Taylor top-scored with 40 in a disappointing Zimbabwean batting performance. Sean Williams (35) and Charles Coventry (21) were the other main run-getters.
South Africa are in Group B with India, England, the West Indies, Bangladesh, Ireland and the Netherlands, while Group A comprises Australia, Sri Lanka, Pakistan, New Zealand, Zimbabwe, Canada and Kenya.
Four teams from each group will qualify for the quarter-finals.
India meet Bangladesh in the opening World Cup match in Dhaka on February 19.
Time for the playoffs
As I write this, we’re just a few hours out from our playoff game against the Mumbai Indians.