The Ferozeshah Kotla ground at the Arun Jaitley Stadium in the Capital went down on Saturday as the venue to witness the highest team total in World Cup history as super-charged South Africa powered to 428/5 in their 50 overs against Sri Lanka. With this score, they surpassed 417/7 by Australia against Afghanistan in 2015.
The South African score was built on centuries by Quinton de Kock (100 off 84 balls, 12x4s, 3x6s), Rassie van der Dussen (108 off 110 balls, 13x4s, 2x6s) and Aiden Markram (106 off 54 balls, 14x4s, 3x6s) as the hapless Sri Lankans had three of their six bowlers going for at least nine an over.
Markram’s 49-ball hundred is also the fastest century in World Cup. He bettered the 50-ball century by Kevin O’Brien, who made it against England in Bengaluru in 2011.
South Africa had lost an early wicket, of skipper Temba Bavuma, which vindicated Sri Lanka’s decision to bowl first.
However, De Kock and Van der Dussen added 204 for the second wicket in exactly 29 overs on a hot day in front of sparse crowd that increased a bit later in the day as the Proteas neared the end of their innings.
The onslaught was severe on the Sri Lankans, who put down a couple of chances of Van der Dussen.
Heinrich Klaasen (32 off 20 balls) and David Miller (39 not out off 21 balls) also chipped in with quick runs.
This was also the third occasion that South Africa scored a 400-plus total in World Cup. The last two such scores were in 2015, in Sydney and Canberra when they made 408/5 vs West Indies and 411/4 vs Ireland respectively.
Besides South Africa and Australia, India are the only team to score 400-plus in a World Cup. They made 413/5 vs Bermuda.