South Africa emerged victorious in a thrilling encounter against Afghanistan, with the latter team bidding farewell to the World Cup. The second innings saw a fierce battle between the South African batsmen and the Afghan bowlers, with the former ultimately prevailing.
Rassie van der Dussen’s magnificent 76* led the charge for South Africa, while seasoned players Rashid Khan and Mohammad Nabi stood out for Afghanistan. In the first innings, Azmatullah Omarzai’s resilient 97* gave Afghanistan a strong finish, despite South Africa’s dominance for most of the innings.
South Africa’s Gerald Coetzee (4/44) and Keshav Maharaj (2/25) delivered standout performances.
Match 42: South Africa Secures Five-Wicket Victory Over Afghanistan
South Africa’s openers, particularly Quinton de Kock, started strong, with de Kock hitting two fours and three sixes in the first Powerplay. Despite some hamstring issues, Temba Bavuma managed to hold his ground at the crease.
Afghanistan retaliated early in the second Powerplay, claiming Bavuma’s wicket. Mohammad Nabi then successfully trapped Quinton de Kock leg before wicket in the 14th over, despite initial disagreement from the on-field umpire.
South Africa’s Rassie van der Dussen and Aiden Markram then took the reins, hitting a series of confident shots and increasing the team’s scoring rate. Rashid Khan, however, managed to secure two crucial wickets for Afghanistan.
Van der Dussen and David Miller then navigated a series of tense deliveries before finding their rhythm again. Their partnership helped neutralize the threat of Afghanistan’s spinners as South Africa steadily approached their target.
Afghanistan managed to break this partnership in the 38th over, but van der Dussen, along with Phehlukwayo (39*), led South Africa to a five-wicket victory.
First Innings: Afghanistan’s Steady Start and Subsequent Collapse
Afghanistan’s openers provided a steady start, maintaining a healthy scoring rate despite a few close calls. However, South Africa’s Keshav Maharaj and Gerald Coetzee managed to claim two quick wickets, causing a sudden collapse in Afghanistan’s batting line-up.
Despite losing three early wickets, Afghanistan’s Rahmat Shah and Azmatullah Omarzai managed to stabilize the innings. However, their partnership was broken by a brilliant catch from David Miller, leading to a rapid loss of wickets for Afghanistan.
Azmatullah then took control, reaching a patient half-century in the 37th over and adding 44 runs for the seventh wicket with Rashid Khan (14). Despite Rashid’s dismissal, Azmatullah continued to fight, adding 71 runs in the final powerplay with the tail-enders.
Pre-Match Decisions and Team Selections
Afghanistan’s captain, Hashmatullah Shahidi, won the toss and chose to bat first, predicting that the pitch would turn later in the day. In contrast, South Africa’s Temba Bavuma expected the pitch to skid under the lights.
While Afghanistan fielded an unchanged team, South Africa brought in Gerald Coetzee and Andile Phelukwayo, resting Tabraiz Shamsi and Marco Jansen.