Dhaka - Virat Kohli has hit an imperious half-century to help India upstage South
Africa by six wickets in the second semi-final in Dhaka on Friday to
cruise into the World Twenty20 final.
As it happened: SA v India
Chasing 173 to win, the
former champions were led by a swashbuckling knock of 72 not out by
Kohli as they strolled to the target with five balls to spare.
This becomes India's second final in five World Twenty20s after they won the inaugural event held in South Africa in 2007.
They meet Sri Lanka in the final in Dhaka on Sunday.
contrast, South Africa, regarded as perennial chokers in crucial
matches, yet again failed to reach any world level final since their
readmission into cricket in 1991.
Mahendra Singh Dhoni, who will
lead India to a triple crown if his team win the final with the 2011
World Cup (50 overs) and 2013 Champions Trophy in the bag, praised the
"Everybody saw that the wicket was better than those we
have played on, and they believed they could chase this down. It is not
just the self-belief, but the belief in each other that is crucial,"
said Dhoni, praising Kohli.
"There are not many who are as
consistent as Virat. It is great to have him at number three," said
Dhoni of Kohli who played just three dot balls in his innings.
South African captain Faf du Plessis praised India and Kohli.
put up a good total but the bad thing is, MS and his team know how to
chase," said Du Plessis. "They have done it many times and Virat played a
Kohli smashed five boundaries and two sixes off
44 balls in a brilliant display of batting, highlighting India's
strength at chasing a target.- South Africa's bowlers blunted -
He hit paceman Dale Steyn for a boundary to seal the win much to the jubilation of a packed Shere Bangla stadium.
and the other Indian batsmen blunted South Africa's best bowlers,
leg-spinner Imran Tahir -- joint highest wicket-taker so far in the
tournament with 12 -- and paceman Steyn with authority.
Tahir managed just one wicket for 30 runs in his four overs while Steyn went for 36 in 3.1 overs.
brought up his seventh T20 fifty with a huge six off Tahir and despite
the loss off Yuvraj Singh (18) and Suresh Raina (21) kept the run-chase
Rohit Sharma made a 13-ball 24 with a six and four boundaries and Ajinkya Rahane scored 32 off 30 balls.
Africa, who batted after winning the toss were helped to 172-4 with Du
Plessis scoring a 41-ball 58 for his fifth Twenty20 fifty.
He added 71 for the third wicket with Jean-Paul Duminy who made an unbeaten 40-ball 45 to bolster the innings.
Plessis, who missed South Africa's last game against England because of
a slow over-rate suspension, hit five boundaries and two towering sixes
as the duo negotiated an Indian spin quartet with aggressive batting.
Africa lost opener Quinton de Kock (six) in the first over before
Hashim Amla and Du Plessis took the score to 44 in the fifth over.
Ravichandran Ashwin, who took 3-22 in his four overs, put the brakes on
South Africa's progress, claiming Amla (22) and then dangerman AB de
Villiers (ten) off a miscued pull shot which was smartly held by Rohit
Sharma at long leg.
In between du Plessis and Duminy batted with
guts to take South Africa to 115 before Ashwin bowled du Plessis off a
Duminy, who hit three sixes and a four, added
another 43 for the unbroken fifth wicket with Andrew Miller (23 not out)
to help South Africa add 106 in the last ten overs.
Amit Mishra, India's most successful bowler in the Super-10 stage, went
for 36 runs in his three overs without taking a wicket.