South Africa trump Pakistan in rain-affected game

The third game of one-day series saw South Africa beat Pakistan by 13 runs via Duckworth-Lewis method in SuperSport Park, Centurion. In pursuit of 317 runs, Reeza Hendricks and Faf du Plessis played exceedingly well and were comfortably placed 187 for 2 after 33 overs before persistent rains lashed across the ground. With this result, South Africa have taken 2-1 lead in the five-match one-day series.

Chasing 318 runs to win, Openers Hashim Amla and Quinton de Kock got South Africa off to decent start. The duo 53 runs in space of nine overs. Hasan Ali came into the attack and dismissed Amla with a slower delivery. De Kock looked fluent in his comeback game and scored 33 runs off 36 balls with the help of four fours. He was run-out after a terrible mix-up with Reeza Hendricks to see South Africa lose their second wicket with 79 runs on the board.

The rain interruption meant that South Africa could regroup in that period. With the resumption of play, South Africa came out with positive intent as Hendricks produced a flurry of boundaries to put pressure back on the Pakistani bowlers. Hasan Ali and Mohammad Amir also bowled poorly to see South Africa bring up their 150 runs in the 25th over of the innings. Hendricks notched up his half-century in just 53 balls. Captain Faf du Plessis also produced a measured innings and rotated the strike well to keep the scoreboard going along nicely.

South Africa were comfortably placed at 187 for 2 after 33 overs before heavy downpours late in the evening meant that no more play could take place in the game. Hendricks scored 83 runs off 88 balls with the help of eight fours and two sixes. Du Plessis also chipped in with 40 off 66 balls with the help of three fours and a six.

South Africa beat Pakistan by 13 runs via Duckworth-Lewis method in the game played in Centurion

Earlier in the game, Pakistan Captain Sarfaraz Ahmed won the toss and opted to bat first. Fakhar Zaman’s poor form continued on the tour as Debutant seamer Beuran Hendricks dismissed in the third over of the innings. Imam-ul-Haq and Babar Azam took a cautious approach inside the Powerplay overs. The duo rotated the strike beautifully to keep the scoreboard ticking along nicely.

Azam looked in ominous form with the bat and played delightful strokes against pace bowlers. He added 132-run partnership with Imam to lay down an ideal foundation for likes of Mohammad Hafeez and Shoaib Malik to go big in the last 15 overs of the innings. Faf du Plessis brought Dale Steyn into the attack to break the partnership. He trapped Azam right in front with a slower one to see Pakistan lose their second wicket.

Mohammad Hafeez came to the crease and was dropped by Amla off the bowling of Dale Steyn. He showed good form in this game and immediately went after the spinner Tabraiz Shamsi, who leaked a lot of runs to see Pakistan bring up their 200 runs in the 35th over of the innings.

Left-handed batsman Imam-ul-Haq notched up his fourth century in limited-overs cricket. He scored 101 runs off 116 balls with the help of eight boundaries.

Andile Phehlukwayo also produced an erratic performance with the ball and conceded more than seven runs an over. Imad Wasim came ahead of Sarfaraz Ahmed and played a brisk cameo of 43 runs off just 23 balls to see Pakistan push beyond 300-run mark. Pakistan was able to post a mammoth total of 318 runs for the loss of six wickets from their 50 overs.

For South Africa, pace bowler Dale Steyn was standout bowler with two wickets to his name.

The fourth game of the one-day series will be played at the Wanderers, Johannesburg on Sunday.

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