Pakistan 270 (46.4 overs): Shakeel 52; Shamsi 4-60, Jansen 3-43
South Africa 271-9 (47.2 overs): Markram 91; Shaheen 3-45
South Africa won by one wicket
South Africa edged out Pakistan by one wicket in a thrilling ICC World Cup 2023 contest on Friday.
The result means the Proteas have moved to the top of the standings, while the Green Shirts’ chances of qualifying for the semi-finals are now hanging by a thread.
The Babar Azam-led side posted 270 runs in 50 overs after opting to bat first, but South Africa chased down the target in a nail biting contest at the MA Chidambaram Stadium.
Ordinary batting performance
Pakistan made a disappointing start to the crucial World Cup game as Marco Jansen dismissed their two openers early.
Mohammad Rizwan, after a few eye-catching boundaries, also departed when the team score was just 86.
Captain Babar Azam played a responsible 50-run knock before falling prey to the spin bowling of Tabraiz Shamsi.
Shadab Khan and Saud Shakeel created a solid partnership as a good total looked within reach for Pakistan.
But Shadab lost his wicket on 43 before Shakeel also departed soon after completing his half-century.
The Proteas restricted their opponents to 270, with Jansen and Shamsi the stand-out bowlers for them.
Markram put his side in dominating position
Shaheen Shah Afridi was at the top of his game today as he dismissed the man in form Quinton de Kock on 24.
Mohammad Wasim claimed Temba Bavuma’s scalp after the skipper smashed four boundaries and a sixer.
Rassie van der Dussen, Heinrich Klaasen, and David Miller all failed to play long innings and departed early.
But it was Aiden Markram at the other end who defied all the Pakistani bowlers, hitting boundaries and sixers all around the ground.
The 29-year-old smashed an impressive 91-run knock at the strike rate of 98.
Markram’s innings put South Africa on the brink of victory but the Centurion-born cricketer lost his wicket to Usama Mir in the 41th over.
In a late twist, Gerald Coetzee and Lungi Ngidi were also dismissed soon, leaving the Proteas needing 11 from 28 balls with just a single wicket in hand.
Pakistan looked to have made a comeback but Keshav Maharaj and Shamsi held their nerve to take their side to victory.
The latest win means South Africa have taken another big step towards qualification to the semi-final of the ICC World Cup 2023.
Meanwhile, the Green Shirts now have a slim chance of finishing in the top four after losing their fourth consecutive game in the tournament.
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