Mixed fortunes for Babar & Bavuma as Pakistan win South Africa thriller

By Sports Desk April 02, 2021

Babar Azam's 13th ODI century propelled Pakistan to a dramatic three-wicket victory over South Africa as Temba Bavuma suffered defeat in his first game as limited-overs captain.

Bavuma, who replaced Quinton de Kock as skipper, could only manage one run with the bat at Centurion, but Rassie van der Dussen's unbeaten 123 helped South Africa to 273-6.

Captain Babar (103) struck 17 fours as he went at almost a run a ball, with Pakistan 186-2 when he departed.

However, they lost five further wickets for just 85 runs from there as South Africa threatened an unlikely turnaround, with some impressive death bowling from Andile Phehlukwayo fraying the nerves.

But Faheem Ashraf got Pakistan over the line off the final ball to give them a 1-0 lead in the three-match series.

South Africa were reduced to 55-4 after being put into bat by the tourists, whose early inroads owed to a blitz from Shaheen Shah Afridi (2-61), who removed openers Aiden Markram and De Kock before then catching Bavuma at third man off Mohammad Hasnain.

Van der Dussen's 116-run stand with David Miller (50) gave South Africa's innings momentum, though, with Phehlukwayo sharing a stand of 64 as the Proteas' centurion found crucial support from the lower order.

The impact of that assistance looked to be minimal when Pakistan set about their reply, Babar and opener Imam-ul-Haq (70) combining for 177 to lay the platform.

Mohammad Rizwan and Shadab Khan appeared to have steadied the ship after Anrich Nortje (4-51) accounted for Pakistan's talismen as he ripped through the middle order.

But there was to be great drama in the closing overs. Rizwan holed out to deep midwicket off Phehlukwayo and, when Shadab fell to the same bowler going for the big shot on the first delivery of the final over needing only three off six balls, comeback hopes were very much alive.

Phehlukwayo then produced three successive dot balls but Faheem took advantage of a slower ball and a wide delivery to produce the final three runs as Pakistan survived a nervier conclusion than was necessary.

Related items

  • 'We are sorry!" Captain Kraigg Brathwaite says the batsmen let the team down in 2-0 whitewash 'We are sorry!" Captain Kraigg Brathwaite says the batsmen let the team down in 2-0 whitewash

    “We are sorry!”

    Those were the words of Captain Kraigg Brathwaite after the West Indies humiliating 158-run defeat to South Africa inside four days at the Darren Sammy Cricket Stadium in St Lucia on Monday.

    The West Indies, resuming from their overnight score of 15 without loss in pursuit of 324, were bundled out for 165 thanks mainly to the bowling of left-arm spinner Keshav Maharaj, who took 5-36, including a hat-trick that saw the home side slide from 104-3 to 104-6.

    Kagiso Rabada was also among the wickets, taking 3-44 as the West Indies batting one man short, fell for 165.

    Kieran Powell, who scored 51, Kyle Mayers 34 and Kemar Roach and Jermaine Blackwood, who scored 27 and 25, respectively got into double figures.

    Brathwaite, who made scores of 0 and 6, laid the blame squarely at the feet of the batsmen, himself included, for the poor performance of the team who did not score more than 170 runs in any of their four innings. The batting was especially embarrassing coming off much better performances against Bangladesh in Bangladesh and the home series against Sri Lanka earlier this year.

    In the first Test, the West Indies had scores of 97 and 162 and followed those weak scores with 149 and 165 in the second Test capitulation. Confronted with that reality in the post-match media conference, the disappointed captain could not hide from the truth.

    “As batsmen, we know we went wrong. We didn’t bat well,” said Brathwaite, who revealed that they had planned to bat better and having consistent partnerships during the series against the South African bowling attack but said they have to come back better for the next series.

    “We are very sorry. Obviously, the fans look forward to the West Indies doing well and we were disappointing,” he said.

    “Sometimes it’s not about winning but you still want to see the fight and we didn’t show the fans that fight. Myself included, we have to come back better and make the fans proud.”

     

     

     

     

     

  • Hat-trick for Maharaj as Proteas whitewash Windies Hat-trick for Maharaj as Proteas whitewash Windies

    Keshav Maharaj claimed a sensational hat-trick as South Africa sealed a 2-0 Test series whitewash of West Indies with a 158-run victory on day four.

    The Proteas secured their first series victory away from home in the longest format since 2017 on Monday, bowling the Windies out for 165 at the Daren Sammy National Cricket Stadium.

    Set 324 to salvage a 1-1 draw, West Indies collapsed on the penultimate day in St. Lucia following a battling half-century from Kieran Powell (51).

    Kagiso Rabada took 3-44 and Maharaj (5-36) became only the second South African to take a Test hat-trick in a sensational over just before lunch, with the tourists retaining the Sir Vivian Richards Trophy in the afternoon session.

    Rabada reduced the Windies to 26-2 early in the day by removing Kraigg Brathwaite and Shai Hope, but Powell and Kyle Mayers showed defiance.

    They put on 64 for the third wicket before Mayers (34) top-edged to Dean Elgar at second slip attempting to hook the rapid Rabada.

    Spinner Maharaj then took centre stage, dismissing Powell, Jason Holder and Joshua Da Silva in the penultimate over before lunch to join the Test hat-trick club.

    Jermaine Blackwood (25) and Kemar Roach (27) added 40 for the seventh wicket, but Maharaj finished off the Windies with his fifth wicket by getting Jayden Seales caught at deep square leg, with Roston Chase unable to bat due to a quad injury.

     

    MAHARAJ MAGIC

    Geoff Griffin was the only South African to take a hat-trick for South Africa against England at Lord's in 1960 before Maharaj worked his magic in the penultimate over of the morning session.

    He had Powell taken by Anrich Nortje in the deep on the leg side and snared Holder before Da Silva was taken by Wiaan Mulder at leg slip, sparking jubilant scenes.

    The left-arm tweaker put the icing on the cake by helping himself to a seventh five-wicket Test haul after lunch.

     

    POWELL A PLUS FOR WINDIES

    Opener Powell was recalled for this series after being left out in the international wilderness since 2018.

    He made only 14 in the second innings of the first Test after being selected as a concussion substitute for Nkrumah Bonner and fell for only five in his first knock in this match.

    Powell, 31, showed the sort of defiance West Indies have been lacking in a 116-ball knock, but there was an all-too familiar collapse after he departed.

  • Day four of World Test Championship final washed out Day four of World Test Championship final washed out

    New Zealand were unable to build a lead on day four of the World Test Championship final against India as no play was possible due to rain.

    There was frustration when the opening day was washed out in Southampton and it was the same story on a miserable Monday.

    The Black Caps had taken the upper hand on day three, Kyle Jamieson taking 5-31 as Virat Kohli's side collapsed to 217 all out.

    Devon Conway was dismissed for 54 late in the day, but New Zealand were in a promising position on 101-2 at stumps – trailing by 116.

    Although a reserve day has been set aside for Wednesday, a draw would appear the most likely outcome in the inaugural final.

© 2020 SportsMaxTV All Rights Reserved.