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CWC 2023, SA vs PAK: SA prevail in see-saw encounter, rise to top spot

CWC 2023, South Africa vs Pakistan: Aiden Markram's 91, Tabraiz Shamsi's 4-60 and Shadab Khan-Saud Shakeel's 84-run stand are top performances. South Africa beat Pakistan and move to 1st spot in Points table.

CWC 2023, South Africa vs Pakistan: South Africa beat Pakistan in a nail-biter encounter at Chapauk  | Walking Wicket (Photo_ ©PeshawarZalmi/Twitter)
South Africa beat Pakistan in a nail-biter encounter (Photo: ©PeshawarZalmi/Twitter)

Brief Scores: SA 271/9 (Markram 91, Afridi 3/45, Usama 2/40) beat PAK 270 (Shakeel 52, Babar 50, Shamsi 4/60) by 1 wicket.

Player of the match: Tabraiz Shamsi (4/60 in 10 overs).

Three consecutive dismal performances pushed Pakistan to the sixth position, while confident South Africa have raised themselves to the second place with a couple of big wins. Both these teams locked horns for the 26th game of the ICC Men’s ODI World Cup 2023 at the MA Chidambaram Stadium in Chennai.

Even with a 3-2 head-to-head over Pakistan, the Proteas haven’t beaten them in ODI WCs since 1999.

Talking point: Pakistan requires players to stay in the middle to hold one end

Pakistan’s batting looks to be out of touch. Only once they have played their full 50 overs in this tournament, just like other teams have someone from the top order to stand till the end to carry the team, the Green Brigade lacks that kind of player. One of their experienced players from the top needs to stay till the end to hold one end.

South Africa held their nerve in a nail-biting affair to reach the top position

Pakistan captain Babar Azam, on winning the toss, opted to bowl first on a track that was hard and smooth, with a bit of grass. Temba Bavuma and Tabraiz Shamsi returned for SA as Pakistan brought back Mohmmad Nawaz in place of sick Hasan Ali.

Pakistan didn’t begin well, losing two wickets inside the first ten overs before Babar’s fifty carried them to 129/3 in 25 overs. The record 84-run sixth wicket stand pushed them to 225/6 in 40 overs, but South Africa fought back at the end to bundle them out for 270 in 46.4 overs.

Even after losing wickets, South Africa kept hitting the big shots to take themselves to 118/2 in 18 overs before Pakistan pulled it back to 136/4 in 22 overs. The 70-run fifth wicket stand carried them to 206/4 in 33 overs. Shaheen Afridi’s energetic spell pushed them to the corner at 250/8 in 41.1 overs, but South Africa held their nerve to gain a one-wicket victory to reach the top of the table.

Top three performances from the Pakistan vs South Africa game in CWC 2023

Shamsi’s 4/60 kept a check in Pakistan’s charge

Coming into the back, Tabraiz Shamsi left a significant mark in the game with four vital scalps. He sent back Iftikhar Ahmed (21), who mistimed the lofted shot to be caught at long-on. Shamsi turned the game in their favor with the wicket of half-centurion Babar (50), who got a feather edge in playing the lap sweep.

Coming back for his ninth over, the left-arm chinaman bowler found the outside edge of Shakeel (52), who was late to cut the short ball. With the wicket of Shaheen Afridi (2), Shamsi ended with figures of 4/60 in 10 overs to now have 69 ODI wickets in 48 games.

Markram’s 91-run innings carried South Africa close to victory

Aiden Markram has been in good touch in this tournament and showed his power with the bat again. He drove Haris Rauf through covers for a boundary before upper-cutting the bowler over third man for a six. Rocking back, Markram pulled Mohammad Nawaz over deep mid-wicket for a six to celebrate his 10th ODI fifty in 50 balls.

He lofted Iftikhar for a six-over long off before cutting Rauf through backward point for a boundary. Markram managed 91 runs in 93 balls with seven boundaries and three sixes to have 2021 runs in 58 ODI innings.

CWC 2023, South Africa vs Pakistan_ Saud Shakeel, Shadab Khan added 84-runs for 6th wicket for Pakistan against South Africa _ Walking Wicket (Photo_ ©PeshawarZalmi_Twitter)
Shakeel, Shadab added 84-runs for 6th wicket for Pakistan (Photo: ©PeshawarZalmi/Twitter)
Shadab-Shakeel's 84-run stand kept Pakistan in the hunt

By the time Shadab Khan joined Shakeel, Pakistan was struggling at 141/5 in 27.5 overs, and they were desperate for a partnership to bring them back into the game.

Shakeel sliced Marco Jansen towards third man for a boundary before slogs sweeping Shamsi to deep square leg for the same result. Shadab nailed Jansen over deep mid-wicket for a six before lofting Shamsi over long-off for another over boundary. Shakeel punched Gerald Coetzee for two more boundaries to deep mid-wicket as Shadab flicked through mid-wicket for another four.

The 84-run sixth wicket stand progressed Pakistan to 225/6 in 39.4 overs. Shakeel managed 52 runs with seven boundaries to have 851 runs in 69 ODIs.

Statistical Highlights from Pakistan vs South Africa, Chennai, CWC 2023
  • Jansen now has the most wickets (10) during 1-10 over the period at an average of 13.70 in CWC 2023.

  • Babar Azam now has 573 ODI runs in 11 innings against SA at an average of 63.7 with four fifties and one hundred.

  • Shakeel-Shadab’s 84-run stand is the highest sixth-wicket stand for Pakistan against South Africa in ODIs.

  • Rizwan has just 87 runs in six ODI innings against SA at an average of 17.4.

  • Rassie van der Dussen has been dismissed by spinners six times in all his six CWC 2023 outings.

  • The 70-run third wicket stand between Markram and Miller was South Africa’s second-highest fifth wicket stand in WCs against Pakistan.

ICC Cricket World Cup 2023 Points Table
ICC Cricket World Cup 2023 Points Table
Points Table after South Africa vs Pakistan game
Points table scenario & what’s to come

South Africa flies to the top position with 10 points at an NRR of +2.032, while Pakistan stays at the sixth position, but their NRR drops to -0.387.

Australia will take on New Zealand on October 28 at the Himachal Pradesh Cricket Association Stadium in Dharamsala.

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