Hambantota: South Africa cantered to a 10-wicket win over Zimbabwe, knocking them out of the World Twenty20 Championship, in a Group C encounter at the Mahinda Rajapaksa International Cricket Stadium here Thursday.
After Jacques Kallis' four wickets had restricted Zimbabwe to 93 for eight, openers Richard Levi (50 not out) and Hashim Amla (32 not out) made light work of the target, reaching with 44 balls to spare.
Zimbabwe with this loss have lost 14 matches in a row in T20 internationals.
South Africa, who put Zimbabwe into bat, had an upper hand from the start. Zimbabwe lost three early wickets and failed to recover hence.
A great opening spell by the Morkel brothers Morne and Albie put Zimbabwe on the back foot. Stuart Matsikenyeri (11) and Craig Ervine, who top scored with 37 off 40 balls, tried to get the innings back on track but Kallis ended the resurrection work pre-maturely.
With wickets tumbling all around him, Ervine dug deep and batted conservatively. Dale Steyn, who took a sole wicket, was the most economical bowler giving away just nine runs in his four overs.
With a meager target in front of them, South Africa took their time and didn't take many risks. Amla was especially circumspect taking 33 balls to reach 32. Levi, after a slow start opened his arms towards the fag end of the innings smashing six fours.
Zimbabwe bowlers looked short of ideas and were easily picked off. The spinners did cause some problems but just had too few a runs to defend on the board.