Pakistan in South Africa, 5 ODI Series, 2019 |3rd ODI |1/25/2019 SuperSport Park, Centurion
That's it from this one. A tough night to forget for Pakistan as they did most things right, but the rain changed the situation and one bad phase pegged them back. South Africa lead the series 2-1, but there are plenty of things they'd like to right in the fourth game in Johannesburg. It takes place on Sunday at 1000 local (0800 GMT). See you for that one. Goodbye!
South Africa captain, Faf du Plessis, says they were below par with the ball and quite flat in the field. Goes on to say that the guys are trying their hardest though and pushing for that World Cup spot. Adds that Ngidi's injury has given them the chance to look for that extra/back-up fast bowler to go with the three they already have and these games are good opportunities to check that out. On the team combination, Faf admits that many players (Like Markram and Hendricks) fighting for one spot, and that even Duminy is yet to return, are all one of those good problems to have. Continues saying that every series is a learning curve and they are becoming quite composed as a batting unit, in realizing when to go for it and when to take a step back. On the bowling, he says there's room for improvement. Ends by saying that the main area they need to focus on is the fielding and that's what they'll try to improve in the next game.
Man of the Match, Reeza Hendricks, says he is happy to have contributed and be on the right side of the result. Reckons that their mentality was good but despite the rain, they only focused on their game and not the DLS calculations. Says that he's been feeling good and scoring a few boundaries early helped him settle in well and find some rhythm. Adds that he only tried to take it slow, letting himself ease in and then taking it from there. States that he doesn't think about the World Cup spot in the team and just wants to do his best in each game he plays.
Pakistan captain, Sarfraz Ahmed, says his batsmen did really well but his bowlers couldn't get the wickets which is why they lost. Credits how the South African batsmen played but laments the poor showing of his bowlers on this surface (after the rain interruption). Mentions that they will work on their weaknesses and try to do better in the next game.
Earlier in the day, Pakistan had a superb outing with the bat after electing to bat. Imam-ul-Haq, who silenced his critics with a finely-crafted ton, was the nucleus of the innings as everything revolved around him. He had two people in Babar and Hafeez, making their fifties along the way, as the opener made vital partnerships with them. Wasim came towards the end and his fantastic cameo catapulted his side to a good total, but Pakistan were eventually undone by the rain gods.
The two rain interruptions were like two sides of a cassette, and on both occasions, Pakistan couldn't wait to get back out for different reasons - the first one came before the 20-over mark and a no-result would have been disappointing for them. And the second time, it was after Hendricks and du Plessis blew them away with their brisk century stand and the hosts were ahead of the DLS par score. The wet conditions didn't help as the ball came nicely onto the bat. It eventually proved to be enough as the Saffas got the victory.
An unfortunate end to what was shaping up to be a close and exciting contest. South Africa started off well with Amla and de Kock fluently going about their business, but the former's soft dismissal off Hasan Ali's bowling and some brilliant work in the field from Shadab to get rid of de Kock brought the momentum back in the visitors' favour.
Update 2138 local - The official word is in. It's not one anyone is going to like. No more play can be possible and as a result of that, SOUTH AFRICA WIN BY 13 RUNS ON DLS METHOD.
Update 2105 local - Here's the deal - the rain had stopped, the covers were off, some overs were reduced and we were about to begin, but the heavens opened up again and literally rained on everyone's parade.
And.... it happens! The covers are brought on by the groundsmen. Raining pretty heavily now. The players have gone off the field. We're in for another frustrating wait. By the way, the DLS par score is 180, and South Africa are comfortably ahead.
I Wasim to R Hendricks, Hendricks stands in his crease and pushes it to the mid-wicket fielder. The rain is getting heavier here.
I Wasim to du Plessis, A flatter and quicker one on middle, Faf is on his knees, makes room and cuts it away to deep cover for a single.
I Wasim to du Plessis, Flicked away to square leg for no run by the SA skipper.
I Wasim to R Hendricks, Short of a length on middle and off, Reeza goes back in his crease and punches it to deep cover for a single.
I Wasim to R Hendricks, Well bowled! Imad sees the batsman coming down the ground and bowls it short purposely. Hendricks adjusts and plays it safely to cover.
I Wasim to R Hendricks, Flatter one on the pads, RH misses his flick and gets hit on the pad. The ball was going well down leg though.
END OF OVER 32 | 3 Runs & 0 Wkt | SA 185/2
Coming down really hard now. Might be just a matter of time before play is stopped again. In the meantime, Imad Wasim is back on to bowl.
M Amir to du Plessis, A length ball on middle stump, Faf drives it back down the ground to mid on.
M Amir to R Hendricks, Punched off the back foot to deep cover for a single by Reeza.
M Amir to du Plessis, Effort ball from Aamir, lands this on half track. Du Plessis is early into his pull but adjusts well and takes a single to deep square leg.
M Amir to R Hendricks, Quick single down to mid off, a fuller length ball that Hendricks comes ahead and pushes it down and sets off for a quick one.
M Amir to R Hendricks, Length ball on off, pushed towards the cover fielder.
M Amir to R Hendricks, Play and a miss! A length ball outside off and Reeza swings across the line but fails to make any connection on the ball.