South Africa vs Pakistan, 3rd T20I: Pakistan crush South Africa by 9 wickets
A record opening stand between Babar Azam 122 (59) and Mohammad Rizwan 73* (47) for Pakistan, gave the tourists victory by 9 wickets with 12 balls to spare in the 3rd T20I, at SuperSport Park, Centurion, today.
South Africa 203/5 (20 ov)
Pakistan 205/1 (18 ov)
Result - Pakistan won by 9 wickets
Match Report – Salim Parvez - The best of Babar
A high-scoring T20I at Centurion will go down as one of the most commanding win in the shortest format by Pakistan, to go 2-1 up with the last game to play. Powered by their captain, Babar Azam, who was at his most majestic in compiling an unbeaten 122 against South Africa, the tourists recorded their highest successful run-chase in in this format.
Put in to bat, South Africa could not have asked for a better start when openers – Janneman Malan (55) and Aiden Markhan (63) – put on 108 runs in 10.4 overs. Markram in particular only faced 31 balls and collected 6 fours and 4 sixes. In Hasan Ali’s opening over, worth 18 runs, he hit 4,4,4,6 off successive balls and the score sped to 65-0 in the six-over powerplay. All told the home batsmen hit 10 sixes in their imposing final total of 203-5. None of the five Pakistan bowlers could create much impression but were touch relieved to keep the score below 220 on this high-scoring ground. Surprisingly, it was only the second time Pakistan had conceded a total of two hundred, since playing their first T20I, back in 2006.
Having looked quite shoddy, two days previously, Pakistan top order needed to be at their very best to reach the target. The inclusion of Asif Ali, had given them six front-line batsmen but perhaps left them a bowler short. After no boundaries in the first two overs, Babar and Mohammad Rizwan cut loose from over No.3 and from that point batted as possessed by super natural force. A classy display of batting by Babar, sadly with no crowd at the ground, has now taken him to the top of the ICC T20I batting ranking.
Only needing 27 balls to his 50, he was on his way to playing one of his silkiest knock in this particular format and Pakistan were happily placed on 101-0 off the first 10 overs. On 90 he produced three exquisite strokes off Tabraiz Shamsi - a pull for six, a four through extra cover and another pull for four - on his way to a maiden T20I hundred. The over no. 15 was worth 21 runs as Babar’s three figures came off just 49 balls. He is only the third Pakistani, after Ahmed Shahzad and Rizwan, to reach that landmark. When dismissed for 122 off mere 59 balls which featured 15 fours and 4 sixes, he had also scored the highest innings amongst his countrymen.
Completely overshadowed by his captain, Rizwan by no means was pedestrian for during his unbeaten 73, he was a perfect foil for Babar. He only faced 47 balls, hitting 5 fours and 2 sixes and was happy to give the strike to his dominant partner. The record-breaking 197-run opening stand was Pakistan’s best for any wicket in T20I and the highest partnership in a run chase, by any team. The two boundaries hit by Fakhar Zaman, sealed the match at the end of 18 overs and South African were left to ponder a below par effort in the field, for the second time in the present series.
Pakistan won the toss & elected to field and South Africa scored a par total at this venue of 203/5, batting first - Janneman Malan 55 and Aiden Markram 63 gave the Proteas an excellent start from which they went to score a competitive total in their 20 overs.
Fall of wickets: 1-108 (Aiden Markram - 10.4 ov), 2-141 (George Linde - 13.2 ov), 3-143 (Janneman Malan - 14.1 ov), 4-164 (Heinrich Klaasen - 16.4 ov), 5-203 (Andile Phehlukwayo - 19.6 ov)
In reply, Babar Azam 122 (59) and Mohammad Rizwan 73* (47) gave a masterclass of T20I batting for Pakistan, putting on 197 for the 1st wicket.
Fall of wickets: 1-197 (Babar Azam - 17.4 ov)
South Africa - Aiden Markram, Janneman Malan, Rassie van der Dussen, Heinrich Klaasen(c)(wk), Pite van Biljon, George Linde, Andile Phehlukwayo, Sisanda Magala, Beuran Hendricks, Lizaad Williams, Tabraiz Shamsi
Pakistan - Mohammad Rizwan(wk), Babar Azam(c), Fakhar Zaman, Mohammad Hafeez, Haider Ali, Asif Ali, Mohammad Nawaz, Faheem Ashraf, Hassan Ali, Shaheen Afridi, Haris Rauf
Start Time: 13:30
Toss: Pakistan won the toss and decided to field
Venue: Supersport Park, Centurion
Officials: Allahudien Paleker, Bongani Jele, Adrian Holdstock, Shaun George, Andrew Pycroft
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