Pakistan battled in a pressure match against South Africa at Auckland, New Zealand as it was a must win game for Pakistan to keep their hopes alive in this World Cup. Winning the toss, South Africa decided to bowl first. Pakistan lost Shehzad in the 9th over but overall Pakistan got a good start because of Sarfraz Ahmed. Playing his first World Cup game for Pakistan in a World Cup, Sarfaraz made run a ball 49 with with 5 fours & 3 Sixes.
After the dismissal of both the openers, Pakistan skipper Misbah captured one end & stitched important partnerships with Younis, Maqsood & Umar Akmal. Match was reduced to 47 overs due to the rain interruption. After the rain, Pakistan batsmen lost the plot of posting a formidable total. They lost 5 wickets for 10 runs and bundled on 222. Again, Misbah was the highest scorer for Pakistan with 56 runs. South Africa got the revised target of 232 due to D/L method.
South Africa lost the only match in this world cup while chasing (vs India) and they failed again to register their first victory this World Cup, while chasing. 2nd innings was all about the great show of Pakistani fast bowlers and ABD’s heroic effort. When it came to a pressure match, Proteas failed to get rid of that “CHOKERS” tag. Pakistan dismissed the out of form de Kock early but Amla & Du Plessis gave a commanding start to South Africa as they scored 67 runs in mandatory power play. South Africa lost the chase when Amla got dismissed in the 10th over & Du Plessis in the 11th over. This was the time when Pakistan came into game and dominated the game till the end. South Africa kept losing wicket at regular intervals and failed to put a partnership. De villiers was a lone warrior who was hitting the Pakistani bowlers all over the park comprehensively. He scored 77 runs off 58 balls with 7 Fours & 5 Sixes & kept the hopes alive for Proteas till 33rd over before he got caught behind when South Africa was only 32 runs runs behind the target. Rahat, Riaz & Irfan took 3-3 wickets and booked South Africa on 202. Sarfraz Ahmed was the star behind the stumps who took 6 catches. With this win, Pakistan have made a strong statement for their entry into the Quarters.
Man of the Match – Sarfraz Ahmed
Stats of this match –
- Before this World Cup, South Africa never lost to India & Pakistan in a world cup match but now lost to both in this edition.
- It was Shahid Afridi’s 500th international match. 8th player to play 500+ international matches.
- Sarfraz Ahmed took 6 catches in a match, leveling the record with Adam Gilchrist.
- South Africa lost 11 out off last 16 away ODIs while chasing.