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World Cup: Uruguay vs. the Netherlands; tied 1-1 after 60 minutes

July 6, 2010 | 12:51 pm

Half an hour to determine who goes on to Sunday's World Cup final.

The Dutch, as they did in the first half, appear to be setting the tempo in the opening minutes of the second half as well. But Uruguay continues to make better use of its time with the ball. The South Americans had more shots and more shots on goal in the opening 45 minutes, and Uruguay's rare charges have produced better chances in the second half too.

The Netherlands looked like a solid choice coming into this semifinal, having defeated powerful Brazil in its quarterfinals. Uruguay need a penalty shootout to get by Ghana. And that win was costly for the South Americans, who lost defender Diego Lugano to injury and defender Jorge Fucile and striker Luis Suárez to suspensions.

But then Uruguay had to defy the odds just to get here. It finished fifth in its regional qualifying tournament, winning its way to South Africa by beating Costa Rica in a playoff. Once here, though, it hadn't lost and entered Tuesday's semifinal as the only South American team still alive.

-- Kevin Baxter in Durban, South Africa