Highest Run Chase in T20 by South Africa – A Review of Record-Breaking Victories

South Africa, one of the top cricketing nations, has produced some phenomenal batting performances while chasing targets in T20 cricket over the years. With a power-packed line up comprising hard hitters like AB de Villiers, Quinton de Kock, David Miller etc, South Africa has successfully accomplished many record run chases in T20Is.

Let’s revisit South Africa’s journey of achieving the highest run chase in T20 internationals through some outstanding batting displays.

Evolution of South Africa as a Top T20I Team

South Africa played its first T20 international match in 2005 against New Zealand at the Wanderers Stadium, Johannesburg. The Proteas won the game comprehensively by 5 wickets while chasing down 126 runs.

Since then, South Africa has grown into one of the leading T20I sides in world cricket. They have achieved several milestones over the years:

  • Reached semi-finals of 2007 and 2009 T20 World Cups
  • Winners of inaugural ICC Champions Trophy in 1998
  • Reached number 1 ranking in ICC T20I team rankings in 2012
  • Runners-up of 2014 T20 World Cup in Bangladesh
  • Semi-finalists of 2016 T20 World Cup held in India

South Africa has always been known for its batting firepower with talismanic players like Herschelle Gibbs, Graeme Smith, AB de Villiers, Faf du Plessis and Quinton de Kock among others. Let’s look at how these batting stars have helped South Africa in some famous run chases.

Top 5 Highest Run Chases by South Africa in T20Is

South Africa has successfully chased down some huge targets in T20 international cricket. Here are their 5 best performances:

1. 221/3 vs Australia

Score: South Africa – 227/3 in 19.4 overs

Chased: Australia – 226/7 in 20 overs

This epic chase came during a T20I match against Australia at Johannesburg in 2016. Batting first, Australia posted a mammoth 226/7 built on the platform provided by opener Usman Khawaja’s entertaining 75 off 40 balls.

In reply, South African openers Quinton de Kock and Hashim Amla got them off to a flier. De Kock blitzed 70 off 38 balls while Amla made a quickfire 40 off 25 deliveries. The foundation paved the way for Faf du Plessis (60 off 41 balls) and AB de Villiers (64 off 28 balls) to apply finishing touches. South Africa got to the target with 2 balls remaining.

2. 204/5 vs England

Score: South Africa – 204/5 in 19.3 overs

Chased: England – 202/6 in 20 overs

In the 1st T20I at East London during England’s 2020 tour, the visitors batted first and put on 202/6. South Africa got off to a brisk start before Rassie van der Dussen (74* off 32 balls) and Quinton de Kock (66 off 34 balls) put on a match-winning second wicket stand of 133 runs in just 70 balls. Some powerful hitting in the death overs took South Africa past the finish line with 3 balls to spare.

3. 179/4 vs Bangladesh

Score: South Africa – 183/4 in 18.3 overs

Chased: Bangladesh – 179/7 in 20 overs

Chasing 180 at the at Senwes Park in Potchefstroom, South Africa were led by opener Reeza Hendricks who smashed an attacking 57 off 28 balls at the top. Experienced Faf du Plessis (63 off 41 balls) and David Miller (34 off 16 balls) made valuable contributions to help the Proteas overhaul the target with 9 balls to go.

4. 173/4 vs West Indies

Score: South Africa – 187/4 in 19.4 overs

Chased: West Indies – 172/7 in 20 overs

In this group match of the 2015 T20 World Cup, West Indies batted first and scored 172/7. South Africa got a quick start before AB de Villiers took charge and smashed an unbeaten 77 off 45 balls. JP Duminy gave him company with 40 runs as South Africa achieved the target comfortably in 19.4 overs.

5. 172/4 vs Sri Lanka

Score: South Africa – 174/4 in 19.4 overs

Chased: Sri Lanka – 172/7 in 20 overs

Chasing 173 at Newlands in Cape Town, South Africa rode on a brilliant 76 run opening stand between Quinton de Kock and Reeza Hendricks. De Kock struck an aggressive 47 off 28 deliveries. David Miller’s unbeaten 25-ball 46* in the death overs sealed a 6 wicket win for the Proteas.

Notable Performances in South Africa’s Highest Successful T20I Chases

South Africa’s highest and most successful run chases in T20I cricket have witnessed many brilliant batting performances. Let’s look at some noteworthy knocks by South African batsmen while chasing big totals:

AB de Villiers

  • 77* off 45 balls against West Indies in 2015 T20 World Cup
  • 64 off 28 balls against Australia at Johannesburg in 2016

AB de Villiers has produced many match-winning knocks in high pressure chases. His attacking batting provides the impetus that destroys opposition bowling attacks.

Quinton de Kock

  • 70 off 38 balls against Australia at Johannesburg in 2016
  • 66 off 34 balls against England at East London in 2020
  • 47 off 28 balls against Sri Lanka at Cape Town in 2019

As an opener, de Kock provides fiery starts to South Africa when going after huge targets. His aggressive approach sets the tone for other batsmen to follow.

Rassie van der Dussen

  • 74* off 32 balls against England at East London in 2020

Van der Dussen announced himself in T20Is through a blazing unbeaten 74 that demolished England. His power hitting abilities provide vital momentum to South Africa in the middle overs.

David Miller

  • 46* off 25 balls against Sri Lanka at Cape Town in 2019

Miller is renowned as one of the most destructive finishers in T20 cricket. He has won many games for South Africa with his six-hitting prowess in death overs.

JP Duminy

  • 40 off 43 balls against West Indies in 2015 T20 World Cup

Duminy played the role of sheet anchor to perfection with his composed batting against the Windies as AB de Villiers went on attack from the other end.

Other Performers

Other Proteas batsmen like Hashim Amla, Faf du Plessis and Reeza Hendricks have also made important contributions during South Africa’s famous run chases in T20Is.

Highest Individual Scores in South Africa’s Top T20I Run Chases

Let’s look at the best individual batting performances in South Africa’s highest successful run chases in T20 international cricket:

AB de Villiers77*4557West IndiesJohannesburg2015
AB de Villiers642836AustraliaJohannesburg2016
Rassie van der Dussen74*3245EnglandEast London2020
Quinton de Kock703854AustraliaJohannesburg2016
Quinton de Kock663472EnglandEast London2020

AB de Villiers holds the record for the highest individual score in a successful run chase for South Africa in T20Is with his belligerent 77* off 45 balls against West Indies during the 2015 World Cup clash at Johannesburg.

South Africa’s Highest T20I Run Chases – Key Takeaways

Looking back at South Africa’s success in chasing down massive targets in T20I matches, we can conclude:

  • South Africa’s highest successful run chase in T20Is stands at 227/3 made against Australia at Johannesburg in 2016.
  • The Proteas have crossed 200 runs target multiple times including 204/5 against England in 2020 and 221/3 against Australia in 2016.
  • Batsmen like AB de Villiers, Quinton de Kock, Rassie van der Dussen were at the forefront of South Africa’s highest run chases.
  • Aggressive yet stable starts provided by openers like de Kock, Amla and Hendricks set the tone for mammoth chases.
  • South Africa’s batting depth with hard hitters like Miller and Duminy made them capable of chasing any target.
  • Individual brilliance – de Kock’s 70 off 38 balls or de Villiers’s 64 off 28 balls – stood out during massive run chases.
  • Supreme batting firepower and self-belief make South Africa one of the best T20I teams when it comes to chasing down huge targets.

South Africa’s achievement of consistently chasing down 200+ targets under pressure in T20Is is a proof of their batting prowess. With thorough professionalism and fearless approach, South African batsmen combining well to create several records of the highest successful run chases in T20I history.

Frequently Asked Questions

Here are some key queries regarding South Africa’s record run chases in T20 international cricket:

What is the highest run chase by South Africa in T20 internationals?

South Africa’s highest successful run chase in T20Is is 221/3 made against Australia at Johannesburg during their 2016 series.

Who hit the most sixes for South Africa in a T20I run chase?

AB de Villiers hit 7 sixes during his unbeaten 77 off 45 balls against West Indies in South Africa’s run chase during 2015 World Cup match at Johannesburg.

What is South Africa’s highest total chasing 200+ target in T20Is?

South Africa’s highest total while chasing a 200+ target is 227/3 scored against Australia at Johannesburg in 2016.

Who was South Africa’s leading run scorer in the chase of 221 runs vs Australia?

Faf du Plessis top scored for South Africa with 60 off 41 balls in their successful chase of 221 against Australia at Johannesburg.

When did South Africa first chase down a target over 200 runs in T20Is?

South Africa’s first instance of successfully chasing down a 200+ target came in 2016 against Australia when they chased 221 at Johannesburg.


South Africa has established itself among the best T20I teams when it comes to chasing down huge targets thanks to their batting firepower. De Villiers, de Kock, Miller and others have regularly delivered match-winning knocks in 200+ run chases.

A fearless batting approach backed by positive team culture and self-belief makes South Africa a dominant T20I outfit. Their historic chase of 221 against Australia in 2016 truly reflects the Proteas batting depth and consistency.

Going forward, South Africa will continue to produce many more record-breaking run chases in T20Is courtesy their batting talent. With experienced campaigners and exciting youngsters in their ranks, South African batting has a bright future.

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