From our correspondent
CENTURION: Fakhar Zaman slammed his second successive century and captain Babar Azam made 94 to seal a 28-run win for Pakistan in the series-deciding third and final One-day International against South Africa in Centurion on Wednesday.
South Africa’s chances of chasing down Pakistan’s total of 320 for seven were effectively dented by left-arm spinner Mohammad Nawaz, who took three wickets in successive overs to reduce the hosts to 140 for five in the 28th over.
Promising batsman Kyle Verreynne (62) and all-rounder Andile Phehlukwayo (54) put on 108 off 100 balls for the sixth wicket but both were dismissed in the space of seven balls. South Africa were bowled out for 292.
With this victory, Pakistan have become the second team after Australia to win two bilateral ODI series in South Africa.
They earned 20 points in the World Cup Super League and move to the top of the table, level with England and Australia.
In a match that tested both teams’ depth with 11 changes across the two teams – South Africa made seven and Pakistan four – one player’s touch remained exactly the same. Fakhar Zaman scored his second successive hundred, and on the way, became the first Pakistan batsman to score more than one ODI century in South Africa and score the most runs by a batsman in a three-match series against South Africa to set up the victory.
Between him and Babar, they asked their hosts to pull off the highest successful chase at this ground, as Kyle Verreynne and Andile Phehlukwayo almost pulled off a coup. Their 99-ball 108-run sixth-wicket partnership steadied South Africa from 141 for 5 and put them 73 runs away from a win. But in the end, the tail was left with too much to do after most of the rest of the top six were undone by spin, with Mohammad Nawaz and Usman Qadir taking four wickets between them.
While South Africa will once again have cause to examine their approach against the turning ball, they also missed their frontline attack, all of whom have departed for the IPL. With Kagiso Rabada, Anrich Nortje and Lungi Ngidi absent, Daryn Dupvaillon, Lutho Sipamla and Beuran Hendricks bowled 18 overs for 118 runs without taking a single wicket. Instead, it was Keshav Maharaj, brought in for Tabraiz Shamsi, who enjoyed the most success, supported by allrounder Jon-Jon Smuts and part-time offspinner Aiden Markram. In total, South Africa bowled 28 overs of spin – the most in a home ODI – and they collectively picked up six wickets.
In a left-field move, Markram opened both the bowling and the batting, which made him only the second South African after Robin Peterson to start in both disciplines in the last two decades. He will be happier with his performance with the ball than the bat though, after he took 2 for 48 in ten overs but was out for 18, inside-edging onto his pad before being caught behind.
Markram and South Africa began well with the ball and Pakistan only got one boundary away in the first six overs, but that was the calm before the storm. When Zaman hit the first six of the innings – off a Sipamla short ball that he muscled over midwicket – the openers seemed to find rhythm. Imam-ul-Haq, meanwhile, took on Dupavillon’s short ball with his trademark pull and brought up his half-century off 60 balls.
South Africa won toss
Imam-ul-Haq c Verreynne b Maharaj 57
Fakhar Zaman c †Klaasen b Maharaj 101
Babar c Verreynne b Phehlukwayo 94
Rizwan st †Klaasen b Maharaj 2
Sarfaraz Ahmed c & b Smuts 13
Faheem Ashraf c & b Markram 1
Nawaz c Bavuma b Markram 4
Hasan Ali not out 32
Extras (b 2, lb 3, nb 2, w 9) 16
TOTAL (50 Ov, 7 wickets) 320
Did not bat: Shaheen Shah Afridi, Usman Qadir, Haris Rauf
Fall: 1-112 (Imam-ul-Haq, 21.2 ov), 2-206 (Fakhar Zaman, 35.3 ov), 3-214 (Mohammad Rizwan, 37.1 ov), 4-246 (Sarfaraz Ahmed, 42.4 ov), 5-249 (Faheem Ashraf, 43.2 ov), 6-257 (Mohammad Nawaz, 45.6 ov), 7-320 (Babar Azam, 49.6 ov)
Bowling: Aiden Markram 10-0-48-2, Beuran Hendricks 7-0-38-0, Lutho Sipamla 6-0-50-0, Daryn Dupavillon 5-0-30-0, Andile Phehlukwayo 4-0-37-1, Keshav Maharaj 10-1-45-3, JJ Smuts 8-0-67-1
Malan lbw b Mohammad Nawaz 70
Aiden Markram c †Sarfaraz b Shaheen 18
JJ Smuts b Usman Qadir 17
Temba Bavuma b Mohammad Nawaz 20
Kyle c Usman Qadir b Haris Rauf 62
Heinrich Klaasen lbw b Nawaz 4
Andile Phehlukwayo c †Sarfaraz b Hasan 54
Keshav Maharaj b Shaheen Shah Afridi 19
Hendricks c †Sarfaraz b Haris Rauf 1
Lutho Sipamla not out 4
Daryn Dupavillon b Shaheen 17
Extras (lb 1, nb 3, w 2) 6
TOTAL (49.3 Ov, all out) 292
Fall: 1-54 (Aiden Markram, 8.6 ov), 2-77 (JJ Smuts, 14.4 ov), 3-127 (Janneman Malan, 23.2 ov), 4-128 (Temba Bavuma, 23.5 ov), 5-140 (Heinrich Klaasen, 27.3 ov), 6-248 (Kyle Verreynne, 43.4 ov), 7-251 (Andile Phehlukwayo, 44.4 ov), 8-257 (Beuran Hendricks, 45.6 ov), 9-272 (Keshav Maharaj, 47.2 ov), 10-292 (Daryn Dupavillon, 49.3 ov)
Bowling: Shaheen Shah Afridi 9.3-0-58-3, Hasan Ali 10-0-76-1, Haris Rauf 9-1-45-2, Usman Qadir 9-0-48-1, Mohammad Nawaz 7-0-34-3, Faheem Ashraf 5-0-30-0
Result: Pakistan won by 28 runs
Man of the Match: Babar Azam (PAK)
Man of the series: Fakhar Zaman (PAK)
Umpires: Bongani Jele and Marais Erasmus (SA)