South Africa vs Netherlands- carnage

It was total carnage, and the South Africa sent a strong message to the rest of the world that this time,they mean business. Yes, it came against the Netherlands, not a team with great credentials, but it was the way in which the Dutch were thrashed which will send shivers down the spine of the other teams.

Hitting six sixes in an over, whatever be the opposition, however small be the ground, is a great achievement in itself and Herschelle Gibbs wrote himself into the history books yesterday by despatching young Daniel Van Bunge six times over the rope in six balls.

The Netherlands started well, as De Villiers fell for a blob to Stelling. Stelling had an impressive first spell and the Proteas scored just 4 runs in the first five overs. It did look like Luuk Van Troost had made the right decision in fielding first. The hiding which followed will probably make Van Troost regret the decision for the rest of his life. His Dutch side will face Australia in their next game, and Ponting’s boys can be as ruthless, if not more, as South Africa were yesterday.

Gibbs made 25 runs off his first 28 balls and then scored 43 off the next 7. Warners Park is not a big ground mind you, the distance from the middle of the pitch to the ropes is about 66 yards. If you were an Oranje fan, the sight would not have been very pleasurable, but if you were a neutral or a Proteas fan, you would have felt delight at Gibbs’ hitting and pity for Van Bunge, who has got himself into the record books for all the wrong reasons.

Anyway, Johnny Walker will now have to donate 1 million US$ to a charity of Gibbs’ choice.

Mark Boucher joined in the fun, and ended up scoring the fastest fifty in World Cup history, surpassing Brian Lara’s 52 off 23 balls against Canada in the last edition.

Kallis ended up scoring his first World Cup century, one of his easiest ones till date. A total of 18 sixes were scored- a record in itself- Kallis scored three off the last three balls- the last over went for 30 runs.

The Dutch knew that the match was well and truly over even before they batted, and they chose to give themselves some match practice. Ten Doeschate scored a half century, and the Dutch crawled their way to 132/9 from their quota of 40.

The question which arises after this game is simple- Should weaker sides be allowed to participate in such contests and then get massacred the way the Dutch got yesterday? Yes as well. Matches like these in cricket will not be as competitive as games in soccer. A Holland vs South Africa game in football will probably see the Dutch winning, but not by something like 10-0. One wonders whether the Dutch will recover from the psychological scars inflicted upon them by the Proteas. Had the game gone on for 10 more overs, 500 would have been a real possibility. I’ll still say that exposure is the key, and the Dutch need to play teams like South Africa more often. For that matter, South Africa’s A side will also be good exposure for them. Their bowlers need to be taught that bowling one paced, full length balls on a small pitch is asking for trouble.

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