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Malan blitz help England wrap up series 2-1 against South Africa

England players celebrating the series win over South Africa
England players celebrating the series win over South Africa

England 181-8 (Malan 78) beat
South Africa 162-7 (Mosehle 36) by 19 runs
Third Twenty20 International in Cardiff

Dawid Malan scored a blistering 78-run knock on his debut as England registered a 19-run victory against South Africa in the third and final Twenty20 International game in Cardiff to wrap up the series 2-1.

South Africa opted to field first on winning the toss. England handed debut for Malan while Alex Hales returned in the place of Eoin Morgan.

In the third delivery of the innings, Jason Roy (8) was dropped down by the keeper Mangaliso Mosehle. However, it did not prove costly as he edged a Morne Morkel (1-32) delivery behind the stumps in the next over.

Malan (78) looked positive from the outset as he smashed a six and a three boundaries to take the score to 46 for one at the end of the powerplay.

South Africa continued to be sloppy on the field as Andile Phehlukwayo (2-44) handed Alex Hales (36) a reprieve in the seventh over. The second drop catch off Chris Morris (0-24).

Malan and Hales punished the Proteas bowlers scoring 62 runs in the next five overs and in the process the Middlesex batsman completed a 31-ball fifty. Even though, both batsmen fell in successive overs, Jos Buttler (32) looked good during his 21-ball knock before Dane Patterson (4-32) pegged the hosts back in the end.

Patterson picked two wickets each in the 18th and 20th over as England ended their innings at 181 for eight.

South Africa got off to a torrid start with the openers struggling to make contact with the ball. Reeza Hendricks (0) fell for a five-ball duck while JJ Smuts (29) managed only eight runs off his first 15 deliveries.

Morris (8) was promoted to number three but the move did not pay dividends as he holed out to deep square leg to give Chris Jordan (3-31) his first wicket. Even though, Smuts opened up with a couple of boundaries and a six, his slow innings pushed the required run rate past 11.

AB de Villiers (35) plundered Mason Crane (1-38) for two sixes in the 11th over but the leg spinner got his revenge by dismissing the Proteas captain in the final delivery of the over.

From there on despite Mosehle (36) and Phehlukwayo (27) contributing, South Africa managed only 162 for seven with Tom Curran (2-22) and Jordan being impressive for the hosts. The 19-run victory has also sealed a 2-1 series win for the Proteas.

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