South Africa beat Pakistan by seven runs, win T20 series

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South Africa beat Pakistan by seven runs, win T20 series

JOHANNESBURG: David Miller’s 29-ball 65 pipped Babar Azam’s breezy 58-ball 90 as South Africa won a thrilling second T20I against Pakistan by seven runs to seal the three-match series 2-0.
South Africa posted 188 for 3 with captain Miller in smashing form towards the death. Pakistan seemed to be cruising in their chase at one stage but a late collapse gave the hosts the match.
Pakistan’s chase was all about Azam. He started the innings with three consecutive boundaries off Beuran Hendricks and did the same to Chris Morris in the next over. Azam was in such sublime form that he eventually ended with four sets of hat-trick boundaries.
Pakistan lost Fakhar Zaman in the fourth over but Azam was in a punishing mood as they got 70 in the Power Play. It was a complete contrast to South Africa’s Power Play which yielded just 44 runs.
Lutho Sipamla and Tabraiz Shamsi put the brakes on Pakistan a little but they still got 100 within the first ten overs with Azam completing his half-century in just 34 balls.
However, Pakistan struggled to shift to the next gear in the second half of the chase. While Azam was playing some beautiful shots all across the ground, Hussain Talat struggled to get going, managing only 34 runs from his first 29 balls.
The partnership crossed 100 but Talat’s pace added pressure on Azam. He perished trying to slog Hendricks with the equation on 42 off 24, triggering a collapse. The odd boundary kept the thrill in the game, with Pakistan eventually needing 15 in the last over. Andile Phehlukwayo kept his nerve even after Shoaib Malik hit a first ball four.
Earlier, Pakistan opted to field first and got off to a good start, although South Africa’s openers added 58 for the opening wicket.
Reeza Hendricks and Janneman Malan, the debutant, struggled to get going particularly against left-arm spinner Imad Wasim, who opened the attack. The first four overs brought only 20 runs before Malan hit Usman Shinwari for a couple of sixes to break the shackles.
Wasim, though, ensured it never went out of control. He first bowled a maiden over to Malan and then had him stumped in the ninth over, completing a stunning spell of 4-1-9-1.
Van der Dussen, the No. 3, got going against the spinners to lift South Africa in the middle overs. The hosts were also helped by Reeza Hendricks’ run out, for the opener was struggling at just around a run a ball.
Hendricks’ dismissal brought captain David Miller to the middle. He first settled in while van der Dussen took care of the striking in a 27-ball 45 that had more sixes (4) and fours (1). The bigger blitz, though, came from Miller towards the end.
The 18th over, by Hasan Ali, cost 18 runs with Miller smashing a couple of sixes. The final over, by Shinwari, went for 29 with Miller hitting three sixes and two fours. Shinwari ended with figures of 4-0-63-0, Miller ended with 65 off 29, and the partnership remained undefeated on 62 off 23 with Heinrich Klaasen contributing just five.

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