Rassie van der Dussen hit an unbeaten 94 as South Africa defeated England by 10 runs but failed to advance to the Twenty20 World Cup semi-finals on Saturday.
England and Australia, who defeated the West Indies in the first match of the day, advanced to the final four from the six-team pool.
South Africa scored 189 for two after Van der Dussen hit six sixes in his 60-ball knock, but England needed to score 131 or less to edge out Australia on net run rate.
England, who led the group with 109 runs, finished on 179-8 thanks to a hat-trick by Kagiso Rabada in the final over. It was England’s first defeat in five games.
Pakistan has already advanced to the semi-finals of Group 2, with India, New Zealand, and Afghanistan vying for the final spot.
“The win was significant, but it was a bittersweet ending for us,” South Africa captain Temba Bavuma said after his team finished with eight points, the same as England and Australia.
“It was difficult to implement net run-rate in our last game, especially against a team like England.”
Van der Dussen and Aiden Markram, who hit 52 off 25 balls, put on an unbeaten third-wicket attacking partnership of 103 to set their team a challenging total.
England chose to bat first, and Moeen Ali struck early, bowling Reeza Hendricks for two runs.
With a second-wicket stand of 71, Quinton de Kock and Van der Dussen rebuilt the innings.
Adil Rashid broke the tie with a leg-spin that sent De Kock out for 34.
Van der Dussen, on the other hand, stood firm and mixed the right amount of caution and aggression to reach his half-century in 37 balls.
He then joined forces with Markram to launch an attack on the bowlers. The pair pounced on Chris Woakes’ fourth over, the 16th of the game, hitting three sixes between them to add 21 runs.
Markram hit his fifty off 24 balls, including a six off Chris Jordan. He knocked out two fours and four sixes.
In response, England got off to a good start, with Jason Roy and Jos Buttler hitting boundaries in the first four overs.
However, Roy suffered a calf injury while running with Buttler and had to be helped off the field.
“Jason Roy’s injury doesn’t help, but we thought we were right in it the whole time.” “Every game puts us to the test in different ways,” England captain Eoin Morgan said.
South Africa took advantage of the situation, and Anrich Nortje dismissed Buttler for 26 in the next over. Tabraiz Shamsi then caught Jonny Bairstow lbw for one.
Moeen, who hit 37 off 27 balls, and Dawid Malan responded with a 51-run partnership, but Shamsi intervened once more.
Moeen hit Shamsi for a towering six but was out the next ball, attempting another big one that instead went straight into David Miller’s hands.
Despite losing his partner in the next over, Malan kept up the attack with Liam Livingston, who hit Rabada for three consecutive sixes to keep the chase on track.
However, Livingstone was bowled out for 28 and South African bowlers took control. Rabada returned Chris Woakes, Morgan, and Chris Jordan to complete the tournament’s third hat-trick.