Auckland, March 25: New Zealand's World Cup batting hero Grant Elliott has conceded rain and Duckworth-Lewis played a big part in South Africa's exit from the tournament yesterday (March 24).
Though various factors played a part in the Proteas' four-wicket loss to New Zeland in the thrilling last-four encounter yesterday (March 24), Elliott said rain was a "key moment" and he felt it was a "shame" Duckworth-Lewis played a part in the final result. (De Villiers, Morkel in tears)
South Africa, having opted to bat first, were well placed at 216/3 in 38 overs when rain interrupted play. For nearly two hours there was stoppage and when the match resumed overs were reduced to 43.
This made the AB de Villiers-led side lose momentum with the captain himself well settled at the crease with 60. With just 5 more overs to set the target, they were helped by David Miller's hurricane 18-ball 49 to post 281/5 in 43 overs. (Full text: De Villiers on WC exit)
According to Duckworth-Lewis method, which is used for rain affected matches, the hosts had a revised target of 298 in 43 overs. New Zealand won a nail-biting match with 1 ball to spare with Elliott smashing the penultimate ball from Dale Steyn for a six. He remained unbeaten on 84 to turn into a national hero overnight.
When Elliott was asked about how the rain affected South Africa's innings, he explained, "Yeah, I think that was a key moment in the game. They would have scored but it was a very good batting wicket. They were set. They built the innings up nicely and it was a shame actually that the weather had to intervene into the game.
"But 290 was a tough score and 43 overs, as well. It's a shame Duckworth-Lewis had to play a part, but I think the spectators got what they wanted in the end."
This was not the first time rain was one of the factors for South Africa at an ICC event. In 1992 World Cup semi-final, they were beaten by rain with the then ridiculous rules making an equation of 22 off 13 balls to 22 off 1.
Again in 2003 World Cup, South Africa batsmen miscalculated Duckworth-Lewis par score and were knocked out by Sri Lanka on their home soil.