Friday Apr 02, 2021
South Africa on Friday posted a 274-run target for Pakistan in the 1st of three ODIs at Centurion, with help from middle-order batsman Rassie van Der Dussen's maiden ODI century.
After Pakistan won the toss and decided to bowl first, South African openers Quinton de Kock and Aiden Markram were contained early on by Shaheen Afridi and Mohammad Hasnain. But once they had settled in and the hard work seemed to have been done, both were dismissed for 20 and 19 respectively.
New captain Temba Bavuma contributed just a single run, as Hasnain picked his wicket, with Afridi the catcher. Soon after, Rassie van der Dussen was dropped in the slips by Asif Ali or the hosts would have been four down and all sorts of trouble.
At the end of 10 overs, South Africa were 43-3 and clearly second-best to Pakistan.
The fourth wicket fell in the 15th over when Faheem Ashraf had Klaasen caught behind.
Van der Dussen and David Miller stabilised the ship and formed a partnership that saw South Africa bring up their century in the 23rd over.
The 150 was up nine overs later as the pair made sure it was not going to be a one-sided inning.
The 116-run partnership finally ended on the final ball of the 36th over when Haris Rauf had Miller (50 off 56) caught behind.
The hosts completed their 200 in the 43rd over, with Van der Dussen in his 80s and Andile Phehlukwayo on the other end.
Van der Dussen's maiden ODI century was completed in the 47th over. In the end, he finished with a 134-ball 123 and helped his side finish 273-6.
Earlier, the visitors handed a debut to left-handed batsman Danish Aziz, who plays in the middle order.
When South Africa visited Pakistan earlier this year, they had a number of untested players in their ranks while their hosts are at near full strength.
This time, the roles have been reversed. Pakistan now have a number of young players in their ranks and the Proteas are at full strength.
Pakistan: Imam-ul-Haq, Fakhar Zaman, Babar Azam (capt), Mohammad Rizwan (wk), Danish Aziz, Asif Ali, Shadab Khan, Faheem Ashraf, Mohammad Hasnain, Shaheen Shah Afridi, Haris Rauf
South Africa: de Kock, Markram, Bavuma (capt), van der Dussen, Klaasen, Miller, Phehlukwayo, Rabada, Nortje, Ngidi, Shamsi.
For the Men in Green, this series will be an opportunity to showcase their capacity in the ODI format, they have played only five ODIs since the 2019 World Cup but will be hoping to replicate their Test and T20I form in ODIs.
Babar Azam will be eyeing Hashim Amla's record of the fastest to complete 13 ODI tons (83 innings), he is currently sitting on 12 centuries in 75 innings.
The last time both sides faced each other in ODIs was when they met in the ICC Men's Cricket World Cup group stages in 2019. In that match, Pakistan set a total of 308 riding on the contributions of Haris Sohail (89) and Babar Azam (69).
South Africa fell short in the chase after Shadab Khan and Wahab Riaz both picked up three wickets each and Pakistan went on to win the match by 49 runs.