South Africa demolished England by 229 runs in the Cricket World Cup to leave the beleaguered defending champions facing an early exit from the tournament after their latest humiliation.
England fell to their third loss in four matches so far on Saturday, having previously been defeated by New Zealand and, in a huge shock, Afghanistan.
The Proteas bounced back from their own surprising loss – to the Netherlands on Tuesday – to post 399-7 after being put into bat in stifling conditions in Mumbai. Heinrich Klaasen (109) smashed a 61-ball century and Marco Jansen made an unbeaten 75 off 42 balls.
England plunged to 38-4 after 8.1 overs in their reply and were eventually dismissed for 170 in only 22 overs.
Klaasen and Jansen toyed with England’s pace and spin to put on 151 as the Proteas notched up the second-highest total in the tournament. South Africa also scored 428-5 – the highest – against Sri Lanka in New Delhi.
After conceding their highest total in ODIs, England were dismissed with 28 overs to spare in its heaviest defeat by runs in ODIs.
Klaasen hit his first World Cup hundred, and fourth overall, and it was the second quickest hundred in this tournament, after compatriot Aiden Markram’s 100 off 48 balls against Sri Lanka. He hit 12 fours and four sixes in all.
The big win cements South Africa’s third spot with six points. England sank to ninth in the table, tied on two points with last-place Afghanistan.
Put into bat, South Africa lost Quinton de Kock for four runs. Reeza Hendricks, coming in for skipper Temba Bavuma who was out because of illness, scored 85 off 75 balls. He hit nine fours and three sixes.
Hendricks reached 50 off 48 balls, and put on 121 runs off 116 deliveries with Rassie van der Dussen, who scored 60 off 61.
Adil Rashid pulled things back for England. Van der Dussen was caught at midwicket, and then Hendricks chopped a googly onto his stumps. It brought stand-in skipper Markram and Klaasen to the crease.
They added 69 runs for the fourth wicket, before South Africa lost its way again. Markram was caught behind in the 35th off Reece Topley, who came on to bowl after receiving treatment on his injured left hand. The left-arm pacer then had David Miller caught for five two overs later.
At 243-5, it seemed South Africa would have to settle for a sub-par total on a good batting surface. Klaasen though had other plans.
Struggling with intense sweating under high humidity and suffering from cramps, Klaasen was not able to run much. He made up for it with fours and sixes instead, as South Africa crossed 300 in the 44th over.
Only four overs later, South Africa passed 350. Klaasen, who scored 50 off 40 balls, raced to three figures off only the next 21 balls. At the other end, Jansen scored 50 off 35.
Klaasen and Jansen helped South Africa plunder 143 runs in the last 10 overs in an incredible display of power hitting, smashing 15 fours and 10 sixes during their stand.
“That hundred is up there with my best ever,” said player-of-the-match Klaasen at the presentation ceremony.
“The conditions were brutal. It’s proper heat and saps the energy out of you.”
Chasing a mammoth 400, the English innings never took off. Three of their top four batters did not even reach double figures.
Jonny Bairstow holed out for 10 off Lungi Ngidi (2-26), while Dawid Malan was caught behind off Jansen.
Jansen enjoyed a productive day with the ball too – he picked up 2-35 in five overs, also sending back Joe Root for two runs. Root hit the ball straight off his pads to the leg gully for a simple practice catch.
The game seemed over when the inspirational, fit-again Ben Stokes (5) offered a simple return catch to Kagiso Rabada, who gleefully accepted it.
The procession of wickets continued. Gerald Coetzee sent back skipper Jos Buttler (15) and Harry Brook (17) in the 12th over. Buttler was caught behind, while Brook was out lbw, as England were down and out at 68-6.
Coetzee finished with 3-35. Mark Wood’s 43 not out off 17 balls was the innings’ top scorer.
The defeat left England with a mountain to climb to reach the semifinals, with skipper Jos Buttler admitting, “It leaves us with no room for error.
“We probably have to win every other game we play from here on, and that’s the situation we’re in.”
Sri Lanka get first win
Sri Lanka finally got their first win by beating the Netherlands by five wickets in Lucknow, India.
The Dutch scored a competitive total of 262 on the back of maiden ODI half-centuries from Sybrand Engelbrecht (70) and Logan van Beek (59).
Offspinner Aryan Dutt (3-44) troubled Sri Lanka with the new ball in the batting powerplay before Sadeera Samarawickrama made an unbeaten 91 off 107 balls and eased Sri Lanka to 263-5 for its first points after losses to South Africa, Pakistan and Australia.
Sri Lanka have two points from four games. Eighth-place Netherlands also have two points.