Pakistan loses to South Africa after great fight back

Thursday, October 18, 2007

LAHORE: Pakistan lost their first One-day International of the five-match series against South Africa after a great fight back here at the Gaddafi Stadium on Thursday.

South Africa won the sensational match by 45 runs with 21 balls remaining to lead the series 1-0.

Set a tough target of 295 runs, Pakistan began their innings with confidence but their top order batsmen could not cope up with fine bowling by Makhaya Nitni, who grabbed early four of the five wickets fell for 92.

However, star batsman Muhammad Yousuf and wicketkeeper Kamran Akmal got together to give Pakistan some stability and added 60 runs. Yousuf scored 53, the only half-century of the innings and this was Yousuf’s 55th ODI fifty.

Later, Kamran Akmal also got out for 35 and Shahid Afridi was joined by debutant pacer Sohail Tanveer. Both plundered 43 runs in just 31 balls before Sohail was dismissed for 26, made off 17 balls with two sixes and one four.

Shahid continued his blasting innings but was caught near boundary line. He made 47 off 26 balls with five fours and two sixes. He was ninth man out and five balls later Pakistan were all out for 249.

Earlier, South Africa won the toss and elected to bat. Captain Graeme Smith and Hershelle Gibbs opened the innings and gave a solid start of 85 runs before Smith was run out.

Soon they were 97 for two when their most in-form batsman Jacquis Kallis was run out.
Gibbs then was joined by AB de Villiers and both made the scene with brilliant batting. They made 137 runs for the third wicket partnership and both scored centuries.

Gibbs made 102 off 128 balls with 11 fours and one six while de Villiers remained not out on 103, made off 95 balls with nine fours and three sixes, and was later adjudged man-of-the-match.

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