Debut delight for de Lange
Marchant de Lange took four wickets on his one-day international debut as South Africa completed a 3-0 series whitewash over New Zealand with a comfortable five-wicket victory in Auckland.
The 21-year-old paceman, who recently made his Test and Twenty20 bows, claimed 4-46 from nine overs to help dismiss the Black Caps for a below-par 206 in 47 overs, as Brendon McCullum top-scored with 47.
In reply, the Proteas needed just 43.2 overs to chase down their victory target, opening batsman Hashim Amla leading from the front with 76, and Albie Morkel, promoted to number three, struck three sixes and two fours in his 51-ball 41.
New Zealand lost Martin Guptill inside the first five overs as he drove to a diving Francois du Plessis at point and Rob Nicol followed, edging Johan Botha behind to AB de Villiers.
McCullum struck six fours in his 59-ball innings, but soon became de Lange’s first victim after finding du Plessis at backward point with a leading edge to leave hosts on 74 for three.
Kane Williamson looked to consolidate with a patient 22 from 43 deliveries, only to end his hard work by running himself out after failing to take a quick single to the athletic du Plessis.
James Franklin and ODI debutant Colin de Grandhomme started to build a vital partnership, the pair adding 55 for the fifth wicket in nine overs but, with the score on 160, the latter’s aggressive run-a-ball 36, which included a trio of maximums, came to an end with a direct hit from Morkel.
That dismissal sparked a collapse as New Zealand lost five wickets for 46 runs in a devastating nine-over spell. De Lange claimed two in three balls, with Amla taking the catches at short cover and slip to end Franklin and Andrew Ellis’ stays at the crease.
De Lange capped an impressive first performance in the 50-over game with his fourth wicket when Nathan McCullum provided Amla, at short midwicket, with his third catch to leave New Zealand on the brink at 189 for eight.
Robin Peterson wrapped up the innings with two quick wickets, trapping both Kyle Mills and Michael Bates in front.
Amla and Wayne Parnell, the latter adopting an unusual opening role, set the tone for a successful chase with an excellent stand of 80 in 15 overs before Parnell was bowled by Ellis for 27.
Amla continued to flourish, bringing up his half-century from 53 balls, and was well accompanied by the aggressive Morkel.
However, Amla edged Mills behind to Brendon McCullum and Morkel holed out to deep midwicket off Bates to leave South Africa 155 for three.
Du Plessis and JP Duminy edged the visitors closer with 19 and 25 respectively and, despite both falling to Nicol, de Villiers sealed the triumph with a flat six over long-on.