Image courtesy of: Dawn
Usman Khan Shinwari took four wickets and Imam-ul-Haq scored 71 as Pakistan crushed South Africa by eight wickets in the fourth ODI in Johannesburg.
Pakistan’s victory leveled the series at 2-2 and set up a decider in the fifth ODI in Cape Town.
Opting to bowl first, Pakistan got the early breakthrough they were looking for as South Africa opener Quinton de Kock was trapped lbw off the bowling of Shaheen Shah Afridi for a duck.
Reeza Hendricks didn’t fare much better as he was caught behind off the bowling of Afridi for two runs.
Hashim Amla and captain Faf du Plessis stabilised the innings for the Proteas as they forged a 101-run partnership, during which both of them surpassed their half-centuries.
Du Plessis ended up making a 76-ball 57, which included five boundaries and a six, before he was caught by Mohammad Hafeez at deep midwicket off the bowling of Shadab Khan.
Amla went on to score 59, which came off 75 deliveries and included seven boundaries, before he was clean bowled by Imad Wasim.
South Africa completely collapsed once Amla was gone as Shinwari’s four-for saw them go from 130/4 to being skittled out for 164.
Shinwari was the pick of the bowlers with four wickets, while Afridi and Shadab snapped up two wickets apiece. As for Wasim and Mohammad Amir, they chipped in with one wicket each.
Chasing 165 to win, Pakistan got off to a great start as Imam and Fakhar Zaman amassed a 70-run partnership before Zaman was dismissed by Imran Tahir for 44.
Imam and Babar Azam kept the runs flowing with a 94-run stand, during which Imam registered his fifty, before he was caught behind off the bowling of Andile Phehlukwayo for 71, which came off 91 balls and included six boundaries and a six.
Mohammad Rizwan walloped a boundary the very next ball to finish things off for Pakistan, who won with 111 balls to spare.
Azam remained unbeaten on 41, which came off 53 balls and included two boundaries.
Tahir and Phehlukwayo claimed one wicket each.
Shinwari was named Man of the Match.