South Africa hold nerve to register win
by CricketArchive Staff Reporter
DateLine: 3rd November 2010
When the late surge led by Fawad Alam threatened to give Pakistan another last over win South Africa this time held on grimly to secure a thrilling two run win. Chasing a South African total of 228 Pakistan were initially stifled but fought back superbly.
Fawad Alam's 59 looked to have swung the game in their favour late on.
But Saeed Ajmal was bowled by the penultimate ball and Shoaib Akhtar could not hit the four needed to win.
Fawad Alam started slowly, but he accelerated in the third and final power play to put his side on the brink of a victory that would put them 2-1 ahead in the five-game series. However, needing 12 runs from the final over, Alam was prevented from hitting boundaries. When he lost partner Ajmal it left last man Akhtar with the difficult task of hitting a boundary off the bowling of Rusty Theron, and it was a feat that proved beyond him.
Superb opening spells from Morne Morkel and Lonwabo Tsotsobe prevented the Pakistani innings gaining any momentum. Opener Farhat and Asad Shafiq were able to occupy the crease, but provided little impetus to the innings and when the former was run out, Pakistan were 130 runs shy of the South African total with 22 overs remaining. The loss of one of their potential big-hitting, lower-order match-winners, Shahid Afridi dealt a further significant blow to Pakistan's hopes. When Razzaq also fell with the run rate edging towards nine an over, the writing appeared to be on the wall, until the efforts of Alam, ably assisted by Wahab Riaz.
Earlier in the South African innings opener Hashim Amla batted from start to finish to score 119 off 126 balls and register the fifth one-day century. JP Duminy, AB De Villiers, Albie Morkel and Johan Botha were the only other South African batsmen to make double figures, while Akhtar - with 3-39 - was the pick of a strong Pakistan bowling display, which also saw Afridi and Hafeez collect two wickets apiece.