Match Report:


Proteas hold nerve against England, eye semis

Quinton de Kock was massive in South Africa's seven-run win over England, moving the Proteas closer to a semi-final place

South Africa's Quinton de Kock has hammered a second straight half-century while Anrich Nortje bowled a tight final over to help their side edge England by seven runs and move closer to a semi-final berth in the T20 World Cup in St Lucia.

Put in to bat first, South Africa started well in their Super Eight clash on Friday with an 86-run partnership between de Kock (65 off 38) and Reeza Hendricks (19). 

They posted a competitive 6-163 despite some slow overs in the middle thanks to a late David Miller cameo (43 off 28).

Defending champions England then lost opener Phil Salt early during the chase while Jos Buttler (17) and Jonny Bairstow (16) fell soon after.

Harry Brook (53) and Liam Livingstone (33) put on a 78-run partnership from 52 balls that got England close, with a second win in three days looming, but with 14 runs needed from the last over, they fell short.

"Getting to those last three overs, the odds looked heavily against (us)," South Africa captain Aiden Markram said.

"But the bowlers came back, it shows a lot of skill and shows the fight inside.

"As a whole, we're getting closer to that complete game of cricket. We're not there just yet but we're getting there."

Champions England will kick themselves for a lack of timing and intent earlier in their pursuit, with a paltry return of three fours and one six in their first 11 overs at the crease.

Captain Buttler believed England lost the game during the Powerplay, as nobody could repeat de Kock's antics.

"Quinton de Kock came out with a lot of intent, really attacked that Powerplay and we couldn't match that," Buttler said.

"We came back really well with the ball and I thought Brook and 'Livi' (Livingstone) had a fantastic partnership there to take us close … South Africa closed out well."

South Africa are now top of their group with four points from two matches. England, second with two points, can still qualify for the semis when they play the United States in Barbados on Sunday, the same day the Proteas face hosts West Indies.

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