Pakistan go 1-0 up after clinical finish
After a disastrous Test series, Pakistan have come back strongly to win the first match of the five-match ODI series against South Africa.
After winning the toss, South Africa captain Faf du Plessis opted to bat first with two debutants on the line-up. Opener Hashim Amla, who was out of form since the last few months has started off the new year well as he scored his 27th ODI hundred.
His partner Reeza Hendrik also played well at the other end, but missed his well-deserved half-century for five runs. Debutant Rassie van der Dussen started off his limited overs career with the best possible way as he scored 91 from 101 balls.
Despite some useful knocks and Amla playing till the very end, South Africa failed to post a big total and they managed to score only 266 runs despite having 8 wickets in hand.
In reply, Pakistan didn’t do the same mistake and they kept the run-rate ticking in the chase. Fakhar Zaman played a quick knock of 25 from 23, but Imam-ul Haq (86) and Babar Azam (49) did the damage to the hosts.
South Africa crawled back into the game after picking up some quick wickets and removing the well-set batsmen, but Mohammad Hafeez, who recently retired from the longer format of the game played a solid innings of an unbeaten 71 from 63 balls to take the visitors over the line along with the support of Shadab Khan (18*).
SA 266/2 (50 ov) | Amla 108, Van Dussen 93 | Shadab 1/41
PAK 267/5 (49.1 ov) | Imam 86, Hafeez 71* | Olivier 2/73
RESULT: Pakistan won by 5 wickets