Joe Root produced a phenomenal innings under intense pressure as England proved their ICC World Twenty20 credentials in dramatic fashion by completing a record chase of 230 to stun South Africa at the Wankhede Stadium in Mumbai.
Faced with the highest-ever pursuit at a World T20, Eoin Morgan’s side responded to Wednesday’s defeat to a Chris Gayle-inspired West Indies in spectacular style, overhauling the Proteas’ 229 for four with two wickets and two balls to spare.
Root was at the forefront of the remarkable pursuit courtesy of a masterclass in Twenty20 batting, hitting 83 off just 44 deliveries.
Root cracked six fours and four sixes, sharing a 75-run fifth-wicket partnership alongside Jos Buttler after Jason Roy set the platform with a blazing 16-ball 43, until he was dismissed with 11 runs needed from 10 balls.
Despite Chris Jordan and David Willey both departing at the start of the final over with the scores level, Moeen Ali got England over the line to end South Africa’s five-match winning streak over them.
The victory breathes new life into Morgan’s side’s hopes of qualifying from Group 1 with games against qualifiers Afghanistan and holders Sri Lanka still to come.
The brilliant batting performance provided a dramatic response after England were hit by a South Africa onslaught that saw Hashim Amla, Quinton de Kock and JP Duminy record rapid fifties.
More to follow