Abdul Razzaq Blasts Pakistan To Remarkable Victory

Abdul Razzaq Blasts Pakistan To Remarkable Victory
Abdul Razzaq Blasts Pakistan To Miraculous Victory
©Action Images / Peter Cziborra

Pakistan 289-9 (Abdul Razzaq 109no, Langeveldt 3-75) beat
South Africa 286-8 (Ingram 100, Amla 65) by one wicket
Second One-Day International, Abu Dhabi

Abdul Razzaq thumped a 70-ball century to lead Pakistan to an unlikely one-wicket win over South Africa in the second One-Day International in Abu Dhabi.

Chasing 287 to win, Pakistan looked out of the match when they were reduced to 228 for seven in the 45th over but Razzaq single-handedly swung the game decisively by smashing an unbeaten 109 in just 72 balls.

His team had needed 25 runs from the final two overs and thanks to his seven fours and ten sixes they got there with a ball to spare.

His heroics overshadowed another solid batting performance from South Africa, in which Colin Ingram stroked 100 and Hashim Amla 65 as they put up an excellent score of 286 for eight.

Ingram's second ODI century in just his second match further showcased his rapid coming to terms with international cricket and South Africa appeared not to be missing Graeme Smith and Jacques Kallis - both absent with injuries.

However, missing the experience of Smith's leadership and Kallis's bowling may have contributed to Pakistan sneaking home as a combination of Charl Langeveldt and Albie Morkel were unable to defend 33 runs in the final three overs of a pulsating encounter.

Pakistan had started their run chase poorly as Asad Shafiq (1), Mohammad Hafeez (30), Younus Khan (18) and Misbah-ul-Haq (17) all struggled to score at a good rate as Langeveldt struck twice.

The innings was given fresh impetus by Shahid Afridi's 40-ball 49 and Fawad Alam's sensible 48 in 68 balls but  their departures, along with that of Zulqarnain Haider for six, appeared to place the match firmly back in South Africa's hands.

Not so, as Razzaq, despite losing both Wahab Riaz (0) and Saeed Ajmal (1) to run outs, took 14 runs from the penultimate over, bowled by Langeveldt to leave himself 14 to win from six balls.

Two sixes over midwicket from the first three balls of the last over - bowled by Morkel - put the pressure back on South Africa for the first time, and after a dot ball, he carved the fifth ball through the covers for the winning hit.

The absence of Smith meant that Robin Peterson opened the batting for South Africa and although he made just six, an 84-run partnership for the second wicket between Ingram and Amla put them back on track.

JP Duminy accelerated well throughout his innings of 54 in 43 balls but the failures of big-hitters David Miller (6) and Morkel (1) just when South Africa needed them ensured that their total, while a good one, was not an impregnable one and Razzaq made sure that Pakistan made South Africa pay for not quite making the best use of the platform they had had.

With the five-match series now level at one game apiece, the two sides now move to Dubai for the third match on Tuesday (2nd November).

© Cricket World 2010