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Dazzling de Villiers sinks England

AB de Villiers hit a dazzling century as South Africa swept to a series-levelling 112-run win in the third one-day international against England at Newlands on Friday.

cricket Updated: Nov 28, 2009 23:55 IST

AB de Villiers hit a dazzling century as South Africa swept to a series-levelling 112-run win in the third one-day international against England at Newlands on Friday.

De Villiers, given the responsibility of filling the number three batting slot, hit 121 off only 85 balls as South Africa piled up 354 for six, a record total in matches between the two countries. Paul Collingwood hit a defiant 86 for England but the tourists were bowled out for 242 in reply.

It was South Africa's first win in eight matches against England, after six defeats and one no-result, and levelled the current series with two matches to play.

De Villiers played some audacious strokes, particularly in the batting power play as he closed in on his fourth one-day international century, at one stage flicking fast bowler Stuart Broad over the head of wicketkeeper Matt Prior for one of his 14 boundaries. There were only 20 balls in his innings from which he failed to score.

South Africa scored 110 runs in the last ten overs of their innings, including 57 in the five-over batting power play.

Home captain Smith was in dominant mood after winning the toss for the sixth successive time at Newlands, a ground where 20 of the previous 25 day-night matches had been won by the side batting first.

Smith muscled his way to 54 off 56 balls as he and Hashim Amla put on 107 for the first wicket. Amla played fluently to make 86 off 92 balls, adding 94 off 78 balls with de Villiers, who raced to his fifty off 39 deliveries. England pegged back the scoring briefly, picking up the wicket of JP Duminy.

Scores: South Africa 354 for 6 (de Villiers 121, Amla 86, Smith 54; Broad 4-71) bt England 242 (Collingwood 86, Pietersen 45; Parnell 5-48, M Morkel 3-39) by 112 runs.