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England beat S Africa, win NatWest series
Tony Lawrence | July 12, 2003 20:48 IST
England, inspired by Darren Gough and Vikram Solanki, pulverised South Africa by seven wickets with almost 30 overs to spare in the one-day triangular series final at Lord's on Saturday.
South Africa, who arrived in England ranked second only to Australia, were swept away in breathtaking fashion after being dismissed for 107 in 32.1 overs on a perfect track. No batsman reached 20.
It was South Africa's lowest one-day score against England and the lowest ever by an international side at the home of cricket.
England -- ranked seventh before the tournament but now up to third -- then cantered home in 20.2 overs after Marcus Trescothick had departed for a duck.
The ease with which Vikram Solanki (50) and Michael Vaughan (30) dealt with the South African attack during a run-a-ball second-wicket stand of 87 underlined how comprehensively the touring side had been outplayed.
Solanki, who made a memorable century against South Africa earlier in the tournament, underlined the gulf as he picked Jacques Kallis up off the front foot to deposit him for six over square leg before driving him through mid-on to reach a 52-ball half-century.
Kallis retired from the attack after three overs costing 33 runs.
South Africa never really recovered from an impressive opening salvo by Gough and James Anderson.
The 32-year-old Gough, back in the England side after a year of injuries as the daddy of a fresh-faced pace attack, served up a master class in fast bowling as he removed South Africa's two key batsmen, Herschelle Gibbs and Kallis, in the space of 15 balls.
Gibbs snicked behind after making nine and Kallis, averaging 314 at one stage in the tournament after consecutive centuries against England and Zimbabwe, departed for a duck.
Gough did not need to return after his opening spell of 7-2-9-2.
Anderson, aged 20, produced a contrasting, erratic performance full of unplayable swinging deliveries and wides.
His display was best reflected in his dismissal of pinch-hitter Morne van Wyk, who struck him over mid-off and square leg for fours before being bowled by a classic off-cutter coming back up the Lord's slope.
Anderson had also started the rout, having Graeme Smith dropped at point off his first legitimate delivery before dismissing him, caught at slip playing with a crooked bat, in his second over.
Like Gough, Anderson was rested after seven. His figures, however, did not bear any resemblance -- 7-0-42-2, including five wides and six boundaries. He ended with three for 50.
Left-arm spinner Ashley Giles, having taken 0-168 in four earlier matches, bowled an attacking line round the wicket for once and took two for three. All rounder Andrew Flintoff, the man of the series, also took two cheap wickets while Chris Read took five catches behind the stumps.
England beat South Africa in three of their four meetings in the tournament.