Cool breeze, blue and sunny skies, perfect weather for a cricket match. Match 7 of the ICC Champions Trophy saw South Africa and Pakistan faceoff against each other. South Africa came into this match with 2 points after defeating Sri Lanka in their first match and Pakistan are yet to get onto the table.
Captain AB de Villers decided that his team will bat first as he won the toss. South Africa’s top order failed miserably against the Pakistani bowling attack. Not sure if I was watching the same Pakistan team that played India a couple of days ago. In the match against India, Pakistan’s performance was very poor from bowling to fielding. However, this match there was vast improvement with the ball and fielding. Their fielding was just incredible to watch today. South Africa got off to a pretty slow start getting just 47 runs i the first power play (1st 10 overs), losing the vital wicket of Hashim Amla in the process. Disciplined and tight bowling were the two major keys to minimizing the South Africans total. The South Africans were in a boundary drought getting their last boundary in the 39th over until Kagiso Rabada broke it the 48th over. Leading the way for South Africa was David Miller who remained not out on 75 ( 3 6s), Quinton de Kock chipped in with 33. Gotta give credit to the Pakistani bowlers, leading the bowling attack were Hasan Ali (3-24, 8 overs) and Imad Wasim (2-20, 8 overs). South Africa ended on 219-8 (50 overs).
In the chase, Pakistan had a quick start as opener Fakhar Zaman fired 6 4s beforing departing in the 8th over for 31 (23). In the same over bowled by Morne Morkel, Azhar Ali launched one into the air resulting him to getting caught in the deep by Imran Tahir. Unfortunately, the skies grew gloomy and grey resulting in heavy rainfall, with Pakistan batting at 119-3 after 27 overs. The match was delayed.
There will be no return to the field as the rains were consistent, having yet another abandoned match in the tournament. Under the Duckworth/Lewis system Pakistan won by 19 runs. Pakistan gained two points.
Group B action continues tomorrow with India and Sri Lanka facing each other.