Champions Trophy: Pakistan defeat South Africa - Three key turning points

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Imad Wasim celebrates after dismissing key man Hashim Amla.

Pakistan put in a top performance to get the better of South Africa by 19 runs (DLS method) at Edgbaston in Birmingham.

Here, we look at three important moments from the match.

IMAD’S BIG SCALP

Imad Wasim, after a poor showing against India in which he went wicketless for 66 runs from his eight overs, bounced back strongly in his first over on Wednesday.

The left-arm spinner picked up the prized scalp of Hashim Amla with his second delivery of the match when the prolific South African run-getter missed a straight ball while trying to get a single and was trapped lbw.

Amla’s wicket was huge because not only was he the in-form batsman (he had scored 103 in the previous game against Sri Lanka) but also the best player of spin in the entire Proteas line-up. With Amla gone early, Pakistan’s tails were up and their bowlers made it count.

HASAN GETS TWO IN TWO

Pakistan really needed to come up with a sterling bowling display if they were to contain a strong South African batting line-up, and while the spinners helped the Green Army wrestle the initiative, they were still not in the clear.

Fast bowler Hasan Ali, who had dismissed Faf du Plessis in his first over, created a big dent in the rival line-up when he sent JP Duminy and Wayne Parnell packing off successive deliveries. He had Duminy edging to slip with an angled ball that straightened after pitching and sent down a similar pacer to castle Parnell.

South Africa, who were shaping up for a fight, were down to 118 for six in the 29th over and from there on it was an uphill task for them.

Hasan, who was guilty of dropping Yuvraj Singh in their Group B opener against India, made amends by picking up two smart catches in this game.

MORKEL PULLS IT BACK

Debutant Fakhar Zaman was making the South African bowlers pay for providing him width by picking boundaries at will and Pakistan were racing towards the target at over six an over.

That’s when Morne Morkel was pressed into the attack and the tall pacer who generates awkward bounce because of his height quickly pegged Pakistan back by claiming both openers in his second over.

The first ball was a bouncer that struck Zaman on his helmet. Having set him up nicely, Morkel followed it up with a slow off-cutter which the left-handed batsman edged to first slip.

He then dismissed Azhar Ali with a short ball but this time the batsman was at fault as despite knowing that a third man was in place he played a shot straight into the fielder’s hands.

The South African bowlers suddenly found new vigour with this double success and sent down three successive maidens to put the pressure back on Pakistan.

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ICC Champions Trophy: Hasan Ali guides Pakistan to victory against South Africa

A disciplined bowling display saw Pakistan defeat South Africa by 19 runs (via D/L/S method) in a Group B encounter in the ICC Champions Trophy at Edgbaston, Birmingham.

After winning the toss and electing to bat first, South Africa got off to a solid enough start, with Quinton de Kock (33 off 49 balls) and Hashim Amla (16 off 20 balls) adding 40 runs for the first wicket. But once the Pakistan spin duo of Imad Wasim and Mohammad Hafeez were introduced into the bowling attack, the Proteas were all at sea.

After both openers fell to the spinners, AB de Villiers was dismissed for a golden duck for the first time in his ODI career.

Then, Hasan Ali ripped through South Africa’s middle-order as he took three wickets which reduced the batting side to 118-6. The wicket of Wayne Parnell will stay long in the memories of cricket fans as Hasan, bowling from around the wicket, got the ball to straighten and crash into the left-handed batsman’s off-stump.

David Miller curbed his natural instincts to help South Africa set a competitive target. The 27-year-old hit just one four and three sixes in his unbeaten knock of 75 from 104 balls.

He was well supported by Chris Morris (28 off 45 balls) and Kagiso Rabada (26 off 23 balls) in the latter part of the innings.

While Hasan was the most impressive of Pakistan’s bowlers, IMAD (2-20 from eight overs), Junaid Khan (2-53 from nine overs), and Hafeez (1-51 from 10 overs) were also among the wickets.

In reply, ODI debutant Fakhar Zaman got Pakistan off to a quick start, as he hit six boundaries in his 23-ball 31.

Morne Morkel then showed why he is still such a valuable asset to the South African team as he bowled a magnificent spell which saw him dismiss Zaman and Azhar Ali (9 off 22 balls) in the same over before getting the wicket of Mohammad Hafeez (26 off 53 balls) later in the innings.

Pakistan, though, were always ahead of the eight ball and when the rain came down after 27 overs during their chase, Babar Azam (31* off 51 balls) and Shoaib Malik (16* off 14 balls) had guided them to 119-3, 19 runs ahead of the par score via the D/L/S method.

BRIEF SCORES

South Africa 219-8, 50 overs [Miller 75*, Hasan 3-24, Imad 2-20] lost to Pakistan 119-3, 27 overs [Zaman 31, Azam 31*, Morkel 3-18] by 19 runs (D/L/S method).

Player of the Match – Hasan Ali.

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ICC Champions Trophy 2017 match preview - Group B: India vs Sri Lanka

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The two captains: Virat Kohli and Angelo Mathews [Getty Images]

INDIA FOCUS

India got their Champions Trophy campaign off to the perfect start with a comfortable win against Pakistan on Sunday.

What was most impressive about the Men in Blue’s performance was that their top four batsmen – Rohit Sharma, Shikhar Dhawan, Virat Kohli, and Yuvraj Singh – all scored half-centuries.

The bowlers also put up a good show, but the fielding was below par, especially considering the standards set by the Indian team in recent years.

The Indian team management took a big call in not picking off-spinner Ravichandran Ashwin in the last game as they opted for Ravindra Jadeja as the lone spinner.

“Ashwin is a high-class bowler, everyone knows that and he is very professional as well. He understood the dynamic of the side that we picked in the last game and he was absolutely fine with it,” said captain Kohli.

SRI LANKA FOCUS

Sri Lanka ended up on the receiving end of a 96-run defeat against South Africa in their opening match and will need a quick turnaround in their fortunes as they face a strong Indian side.

While Sri Lanka will be boosted by the return of skipper Angelo Mathews, they will miss Upul Tharanga who has been suspended for two matches because of a slow over-rate in the game against the Proteas when he was standing in as captain.

Chamara Kapugedera has been ruled out of the tournament after he suffered a knee injury during training. He has been replaced in the squad by Danushka Gunathilaka.

DATE, TIME, VENUE INFO

Date: June 8, 2017 (Thursday)

Time: 13:30 GST, 10:30 local, 09:30 GMT, 15:00 IST, 14:30 PKT

Venue: Kennington Oval, London

WHERE TO WATCH, LIVE STREAMING INFO

TV: UAE – OSN Sports Cricket HD

Full coverage on Sport360.com.

PROBABLE INDIA XI: Rohit, Dhawan, Kohli (c), Yuvraj, Dhoni (wk), Jadhav, Pandya, Jadeja, Bhuvneshwar, Umesh, Bumrah.

PROBABLE SRI LANKA XI: Dickwella (wk), Kusal Perera, Mendis, Chandimal, Mathews (c), Gunaratne, Thisara Perera, Prasanna, Lakmal, Malinga, Pradeep.

SPORT360 MATCH PREDICTION: On paper, India seem to have the better side and go into the game as favourites.

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