Haris Sohail stars as Pakistan snuff out South Africa’s World Cup hopes


With this result, Pakistan have climbed to the middle of the table and are breathing down the backs of the top four teams with 5 points from six matches. South Africa are out of the race for the World Cup semifinals after this loss.

Shared News| Updated: June 23, 2019 11:22:29 pm
Pakistan celebrate the wicket of South Africa’s Faf du Plessis at Lord’s on Sunday (Reuters Photo)

Pakistan beat South Africa by 49 runs at Lord’s in London on Sunday. With this result, Pakistan have climbed to the middle of the table and are breathing down the backs of the top four teams with 5 points from six matches. South Africa are now in ninth place, having managed just 3 points from seven matches. Even numerically, they do not stand any chance of finishing in the top four spots after this loss.
Toss:Pakistan captain Sarfaraz Ahmed won the toss and decided that they would bat first.

First Innings: Pakistan put up 308/7 in 50 overs. Their openers got off to a flier as the pitch did not offer much for new ball bowlers Kagiso Rabada and Lungi Ngidi. Fakhar Zaman (44) and Imam-ul-Haq (44) were both dismissed in a space of five overs by Imran Tahir (2/41). Babar Azam (69) and Mohammad Hafeez tried to build a partnership in between them before Hafeez was dismissed by Aiden Markram. After Babar Azam’s wicket, Haris Sohail took the South Africa bowlers to the cleaners before falling for a 59-ball 89 in the last over.

Second Innings: Chasing 309 for victory, South Africa were never in sight of the target. Hashim Amla (2) was caught lbw by Mohammed Amir (2/49) early on in the innings to give them an early setback. Quinton de Kock (47) and Faf du Plessis (63) put on an 87-run stand between them for the second wicket, but their wickets changed the complexion of the match to make it a rather one-sided one. Apart from Amir, Shadab Khan (3/50) was the standout bowler on display, dismissing De Kock, Aiden Markram (7) and Rassie van der Dussen (36).

Gamechanger: Haris Sohail’s performance in the later part of the innings was the one big factor which handed the game on a platter to Pakistan. When he stepped out to bat to join Babar Azam, Pakistan’s score was 143/3 in the 30th over. He played the role of the aggressor from very early on, coming into his own after Babar Azam’s wicket.
Being played in only his second match of the World Cup so far, Haris Sohail’s 59-ball 89 did more than just prove a point. His score was the second highest score by a Pakistani batting at number 5 in World Cups, only next to Imran Khan’s 102 in the 1983 World Cup.

Captains Speak:

Faf du Plessis:

We are not playing good cricket. We didn’t bowl well. 300 plus on that target was 20-25 more on that track. As we were building partnerships, we have been losing wickets. It has been case of confidence. When you are playing well, the ball just falls in your court. When you are playing against a quality team like Pakistan, they will put you under pressure. Imran has played with a lot of heart and has led our attack. We haven’t been able to do justice to ourselves as a team. For me the biggest disappointment has been we have been letting ourselves down.
Sarfaraz Ahmed: A complete team performance. I think a couple of team combinations didn’t allow us to play Haris Sohail before. But he did well after getting his chance. Today, the way he batted, he looked hungry. He was the difference. Batted like Jos Buttler. We have to work hard on our fielding. We dropped so many catches. It was a complete bowling effort. Credit to Amir for picking up early wickets. Shadab picked up wickets in the middle overs and Wahab got us wickets at the death. Thank you for all the support.

Brief Scores: PAK 308/7 (50 overs) | SA 259/9 (50 overs)