In tricky fielding conditions with the ball slightly wet due to a faint drizzle, Rilee Rossouw took an excellent leaping catch at the edge of the ropes to seal a team hat-trick for South Africa.
With Pakistan going gung-ho towards the end of their innings against South Africa, Rilee Rossouw produced a moment of magic to dismiss half-centurion Iftikhar Ahmed and seal a team hat-trick at the Sydney Cricket Ground on Thursday, November 3.
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In a must-win game for Pakistan, openers Babar Azam (6) and Mohammad Rizwan (4) once again failed to deliver, leaving the middle-order to do all the heavy lifting.
However, a blazing World Cup cameo from 21-year-old Mohammad Haris (28 off 11 balls) helped give the team a boost in the powerplay.
The seniors then took over as half-centuries from Shadab Khan (52 off 22 balls) and Iftikhar (51 off 35 balls) carried Pakistan to a dominant total before South Africa managed to peg them back with a timely team hat-trick in the final two overs.
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The 82-run partnership between Iftikhar and Shadab was finally broken by Anrich Nortje on the penultimate delivery of the 19th over. Nortje sent down a short delivery down leg and Shadab went for the pull only to find Tristan Stubbs at deep midwicket.
Nortje then got Mohammad Wasim (0) caught out with a bouncer on the very next delivery to make it two-in-two for South Africa.
Kagiso Rabada started with a full delivery to Iftikhar in the next over and the batter connected well to launch it towards long-on only to see Rossouw pull off a stunner right at the edge of the boundary.
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Rossouw leapt and grabbed the ball with both hands high over his head before managing to control his momentum and land calmly just inches inside the boundary line.
The wicket made it three wickets in three deliveries for South Africa sealing a team hat-trick. It also helped them peg Pakistan back although a bit too late in the innings as the Men in Green posted an impressive total of 185/9.
First Published: IST