Pakistan square the series
Dubai - Pakistan beat the Proteas by one wicket with a ball to spare at Dubai on Friday to square the limited overs series at 2-2 with a game still to be played
The decider will be played at Dubai on Monday.
The Proteas had made the highest score at Dubai of 274/6 with Graeme Smith providing the foundation with 92 off 105 balls. It was the Proteas’ captain’s highest score against Pakistan and also took his total of ODI runs as captain to 5 000. It was his 50th score of 50 or more (42 half-centuries and 8 centuries).
The Proteas’ middle order gave good support with AB de Villiers making 49 off 70 balls and JP Duminy 36 off 51.
Johan Botha came to the fore in the batting power play when he made an unbeaten 28 off 15 balls (6 boundaries) that enabled the Proteas to score 54 in the five batting power play overs. Botha batted with both flair and courage hitting reverse sweeps off Mohammed Hafeez and then conventional sweeps off Wahab Riaz.
But in the end it was not quite enough. Pakistan always stayed ahead of the Proteas’ run rate and, when they only needed 4 runs off the last 6 balls, the writing was on the wall.
The Proteas were without Lonwabo Tsotsobe who complained of lower back muscle spasms which was not altogether that surprising after playing five games in a short space of time.
Dale Steyn and Wayne Parnell both played their first games of the tour and Steyn, in particular, was very expensive conceding 79 runs in his 10 overs.
Parnell conceded 53 runs in 8.5 overs.
Younis Khan set up Pakistan’s successful runs chase (73 off 115 balls with one four) and there was good support from him down the order.
Morne Morkel had the best South African figures of 3/48 in his 10 overs.Teams:
Pakistan - Asad Shafiq, Imran Farhat, Mohammad Hafeez, Younis Khan, Fawad Alam, Shahid Afridi (capt), Abdul Razzaq, Zulqarnain Haider (wk), Wahab Riaz, Shoaib Akhtar, Abdur Rehman.
South Africa – Graeme Smith (capt), Hashim Amla, AB de Villiers (wk), Jacques Kallis, JP Duminy, Colin Ingram, David Miller, Johan Botha, Morne Morkel, Dale Steyn, Wayne Parnell.