Mohammed Rizwain continues to add to his reputation with an excellent century vs South Africa in Pakistan’s narrow 3 run win over the Proteas that went done to the wire . South Africa made a valiant attempt to chase down 170 target on a pitch that was gripping but in the end fell short by just 3 runs.
Batting first , Pakistan suffered an early jolt as skipper Babar Azam was runout off his own call for a sharp single. However , unflustered , Mohammed Rizwan looked in total control and soon started to time his shots . He scored a match deciding century vs South Africa in the 2nd test and so was full of confidence , unleashing many dazzling shots after getting acquainted with the pitch . Always a fine puller he hit some gorgeous shots on the onside. His pickup shot for a 6 , a savage pull for another 6 and a gorgeous lofted off drive for a 3rd 6 was worth travelling miles to watch.
However Pakistan continued to lose wickets at other end and only Haider Ali (21) managed a good stand with Rizwan in mid innings . The balls were gripping and Shamsi bowled a fine spell of 20 runs off 4 overs getting spin off the wicket and dismissing lefthander Hussain Talat (15) cheaply with a classic away going delivery getting him stumped. Phehlukwayo (2/33) mixed up his slower balls to restrict the opposition . Thus inspite of Rizwan’s gallant unbeaten 104 off 64 balls , Pakistan could score no more than 169/6.
South Africa started in great style with Janneman Malan and Reeza Hendricks taking on the strong Pakistan bowling with a quick 53 run first with stand . Malan was playing sparkling shots particularly on the onside finding the gaps . As the partnership threatened to get big , Usman Qadir , son of late Abdul Qadir , the illustrious leg spinner of Pakistan in 1980s , bowled a beautiful leg spinner to Malan (44 off 29 balls) that pitched , spun away and hit off stump for a vital breakthrough. That helped Pakistan to fight back as with the pitch gripping , the South African middle order was found wanting and they gradually lost their way with Qadir bowling an inspired spell getting 2/21 off 4 overs . Haris Raif too got a couple of important wickets though he went for a few runs . Much was expected from David Miller (6) and skipper Klaasen (12) both both perished with low scores . Phehlukwayo could not sustain his aggression ( 14 off 8 balls) . The pressure got too much on Hendricks who finally departed after a fine 54 off 42 balls as the asking rate went up rapidly .
However allrounders Pretorius and Fortuin had other ideas as they made a final dash at the runs in last few overs which ended up with South Africa needing 19 off the final over to be bowled by Faheem Ashraf .
After two singles of 1st two balls , the 3rd ball was hoised by Pretorius (15) for a 6 over longon. 4th ball yielded a single. Off the 5th ball Fortuin hit a four through fine leg and the Proteas needed just a 6 of final ball. However Fortuin (17) could not do a Javed Miandad as he could manage only 2 off the yorker length final ball . Pakistan victorious by 3 runs in an exciting match.
Rizwan for his matchwinning hundred was the forgone conclusion for Man of the match award.
Brief scores :
Pakistan 169/6 ( 20 overs)
Rizwan 104 * (64)
Haider Ali 21(16)
South Africa 166/6 (20 overs)
Malan 44 (29)
Usman Qadir 2/21
Haris Rauf 2/44