Hendricks smashes third straight half-century; Proteas thrash England by 90 runs


Southampton, Aug 1 : South Africa's top-order batter Reeza Hendricks came up with his third consecutive half-century as the visitors thrashed England by a whopping 90 runs at The Rose Bowl to clinch the three-match T20 International series 2-1 here. Hendricks smashed a 50-ball 70 on Sunday evening and left-arm spinner Tabraiz Shamsi grabbed a five-for as the Proteas dismissed Jos Buttler's England for just 101 runs in 16.4 overs after posting 191/5 in their 20 overs to complete the hosts' humiliation. With the ICC T20 World Cup in Australia beckoning, South Africa have lost just four of their last 20 matches in the shortest format of the game. In-form opener Hendricks set the tone in Southampton with a masterly 70 and it was no surprise that the right-hander was named 'Player of the Series' for his 180 runs that included three half-tons. Shamsi was the wrecker with the ball in the last match of the series as he completed his maiden five-wicket haul in T20Is, and he should be the key player for the Proteas at the T20 World Cup in October-November this year. While England's Test fortunes under new coach Brendon McCullum and skipper Ben Stokes have turned around with the side winning four consecutive games, the same cannot be said for their white-ball squads led by Buttler. England will finish their summer without a white-ball series triumph and their 2-1 T20I series loss to South Africa is arguably their most disappointing. Jonny Bairstow top-scored for the hosts with 27, but the highlights were few and far between to leave new white-ball coach from Australia, Matthew Mott, with a lot to ponder ahead of the T20 World Cup in Australia. England, at this juncture, have 10 more games before the start of their T20 World Cup campaign against Afghanistan on October 22 and Mott knows he has a lot on his plate. The Australian coach has lost consecutive T20I series since taking over in May and knows his team has to improve if it wants to be competitive Down Under. "I've just spoken to Jos (Buttler) very briefly and this is a line in the sand moment for the team," Mott was quoted as saying by Sky Sports. Brief scores: South Africa 191/5 in 20 overs (Reeza Hendricks 70, Aiden Markram 51 not out; David Willey 3/25) beat England 101 in 16.4 overs (Jonny Bairstow 27; Tabraiz Shamsi 5/24, Keshav Maharaj 2/21) by 90 runs. /IANS


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