Van der Dussen’s standout performance leads South Africa to victory against Afghanistan

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South Africa’s Gerald Coetzee took four wickets, and spinner Keshav Maharaj impressed with figures of 2-25 as the Proteas prepared for their semi-final clash against Australia. Rassie van der Dussen and Andile Phehlukwayo maintained their composure in an unbeaten 65-run partnership, leading South Africa to a five-wicket victory and ending Afghanistan’s World Cup 2023 campaign in Ahmedabad on Friday. Earlier in the day, Afghanistan’s hopes of reaching the World Cup semi-finals were all but dashed when they were bowled out for 244 by South Africa. Choosing to bat first in Ahmedabad, Afghanistan found themselves in a precarious position at 116 for 6. However, Azmatullah Omarzai’s resilient and unbeaten 97 helped them post a competitive total, although it fell short of the substantial victory margin needed for their slim chances. South Africa’s Gerald Coetzee took four wickets, and spinner Keshav Maharaj impressed with figures of 2-25 as the Proteas prepared for their semi-final clash against Australia. Despite a strong start from openers Rahmanullah Gurbaz and Ibrahim Zadran, Afghanistan faced setbacks. Maharaj’s first-ball strike removed Gurbaz for 25, and Coetzee dismissed Ibrahim in the next over. Skipper Hashmatullah Shahidi fell to Maharaj, leaving Afghanistan struggling at 45-3. Rahmat Shah’s 26-run partnership with Azmatullah was disrupted by fast bowler Lungi Ngidi, but Azmatullah showed resilience. Despite the risk of being bowled out in under 50 overs, he anchored crucial partnerships with Rashid Khan (14) and Noor Ahmad (26). Afghanistan’s dreams of securing a spot in the final four were shattered after a heart-wrenching defeat to Australia, which was further compounded by New Zealand’s triumph over Sri Lanka.