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Smith praises Morkel after South Africa win

DURBAN, South Africa, Sep 20 (Reuters) Fast bowler Morne Morkel earned captain Graeme Smith's praise after he set up South Africa's six-wicket win over New Zealand in a Twenty20 World Cup Super Eights match.

Morkel took four for 17 to restrict New Zealand to 153 for eight.

South Africa replied with 158 for four to win with five balls to spare.

''He has the ability to bowl quick and, with his height, to get bounce,'' Smith told a news conference.

''The calmness he is handling himself with and the trust he is showing in his own bowling has been great.

''He's a humble guy and I'd like to keep him working hard and making further progress.'' The other outstanding performer for South Africa was Justin Kemp, who smashed an unbeaten 89 off 56 balls with six fours and six sixes.

Kemp said he was confident of reaching the target set by New Zealand.

''It's such a good wicket that if you get set you could chase anything,'' Kemp said.

The big-hitting Kemp bristled at a suggestion that he was a specialist Twenty20 player.

''I've already been labelled a one-day cricketer, so please don't go there,'' Kemp said.

The result put England out of the running for a place in the semi-finals and New Zealand captain Daniel Vettori said he would root for India's remaining opponents in the Super Eights.

''If India lose either of their games against England (ysterday) or South Africa (today), then we're through,'' Vettori said.

An England win over India would secure semi-final berths for New Zealand and South Africa.

Reuters BJR DB0958

Story first published: Thursday, September 20, 2007, 10:34 [IST]
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