South Africa v England: Hosts win by nine wickets to take series 2-0

South Africa celebrate their series win
South Africa have won eight of their past nine completed T20s
Second Twenty20 international, Wanderers:
England 171 (19.4 overs): Buttler 54 (28), Abbott 3-26
South Africa 172-1 (14.4 overs): De Villiers 71 (29), Amla 69* (38)
South Africa won by nine wickets

South Africa swept to a comprehensive nine-wicket victory over England in the second Twenty20 to seal a 2-0 series win.

AB de Villiers smashed 71 off 29 balls and Hashim Amla an unbeaten 69 off 38 as the hosts chased down 172 with 5.2 overs to spare in Johannesburg.

England lost their last seven wickets for 14 runs as they were bowled out for 171 despite Jos Buttler's 28-ball 54.

Eoin Morgan made 38 and Joe Root 34, while Chris Morris claimed 3-26.

Defeat was England's fifth in succession in limited-overs cricket, and means they ended a tour on which they won the Test series with losses in both the one-day and T20 series.

It was their final competitive game before the World Twenty20 in India starts on 8 March, while South Africa face Australia in a three-match T20 campaign on home soil from 4 March.

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The manner in which England were dismantled by De Villiers and Amla dented the optimism built up during a successful 12 months in the limited-overs format.

Captain Morgan said: "It's just a blip - we've had such a good run of things in white-ball cricket.

"I honestly think we are on the right track playing a brand of cricket that can win an ICC event, whether it is this one coming up or one in 2017."

South Africa's AB de Villiers
South Africa's AB de Villiers holds the record for the fastest ODI century, off 31 balls

De Villiers goes large

If England had any hopes of defending an apparently testing total at the Wanderers, they were ended by a riotous 125-run opening stand between De Villiers and Amla spanning 8.2 overs.

De Villiers will rightly take the headlines for a remarkable display of hitting, marrying power with placement against an increasingly ill-disciplined attack.

He flicked the first ball of the innings from Reece Topley for four and plundered 22 off the next over from Chris Jordan on his way to a 21-ball fifty, the fastest by a South African in T20s.

"I really enjoy it up the order," said De Villiers. "You can play normal shots and get value for your strokes. That's where I want to bat."

By the time he sliced Adil Rashid to wide long-off, he had scored 60 of his 71 runs in boundaries, and victory was as good as sealed.

Such was his dominance that Amla's elegant 27-ball half-century went largely unnoticed, while Faf du Plessis had the luxury of sealing victory with a cover-driven four off Jordan.

Jordan's 2.4 overs cost 48 runs, while Topley, whose mistake allowed South Africa to win the first T20 in Cape Town on Friday, leaked 32 from two wicketless overs.

AB de Villiers wagon wheel
AB de Villiers struck six fours (yellow) and six sixes (red)

Seven wickets, 14 runs, 18 balls...

As well as De Villiers and Amla batted, England's defeat was arguably founded on their remarkable batting collapse.

A slide from 157-3 to 171 all out in 18 deliveries was largely of their own making, hastened by a rash of wild strokes on a reliable surface offering pace and bounce.

Only Joe Root, with 34 off 17 balls, Eoin Morgan (38 off 23) and Buttler, who smashed four fours and four sixes, emerged with any credit.

This is how the collapse unfolded:

  • 157-4 (16.3 overs): Buttler c Du Plessis b Abbott 54. Buttler drives low to extra-cover
  • 157-5 (16.4): Morgan run out 38. Abbott deflects Ben Stokes' straight drive on to the stumps at the non-striker's end with Morgan out of his ground
  • 158-6 (17.1): Stokes c&b Morris 1. Caught off the toe end attempting to make room
  • 160-7 (17.5): Moeen c Duminy b Morris 1. Superbly held by Duminy running in from deep cover
  • 166-8 (18.4): Jordan c Du Plessis b Abbott 1. Skies an attempted swipe
  • 166-9 (18.5): Billings c Amla b Abbott 5. Pulls straight to square-leg, the third time in the innings two wickets fell in the space of two balls
  • 171 all out (19.4): Rashid b Rabada 2. Off stump uprooted as he heaves across the line

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