Pak v SA, World T20 2012, Super Eights, Colombo

Maidens galore, and Gul's redemption

Plays of the Day from the Super Eights match between South Africa and Pakistan in Colombo

Abhishek Purohit at the Premadasa

September 28, 2012

Comments: 22 | Text size: A | A

Umar Akmal held the chase together, Pakistan v South Africa, World Twenty 20 2012, Super Eights, Colombo, September 28, 2012
Umar Akmal showed good presence of mind to ensure he kept strike for the final over © ICC/Getty

The double surprise
With Saeed Ajmal, Umar Gul, Shahid Afridi, and himself available, Mohammad Hafeez opened the Pakistan bowling with the young left-arm spinner Raza Hasan, playing his first game of the tournament. As if that wasn't enough of a surprise for South Africa, he gave the second over to bowling allrounder Yasir Arafat. As if even that wasn't enough, Hasan and Arafat went on to bowl the first five overs.

The departure from modernity
South Africa were trudging at below five an over around the halfway stage of their innings. With Ajmal bowling the 12th over, Pakistan were confident enough to have no sweeper cover or deep point, a position modern captains love to have even in Tests. Farhaan Behardien used the largesse to cut through the region for a four.

The delayed déjà vu
Umar Gul was carted all around the Pallekele stadium during the group stage by New Zealand and Bangladesh. With Pakistan's spinners squeezing South Africa right from the start, Hafeez brought on his premier fast bowler as late as the 18th over. It changed little. First ball, AB de Villiers lofted him over wide long-on for six. Gul got de Villiers next ball, but went for 19 in two overs. He was to later hit South Africa back, with the bat though.

The height of predictability
Shahid Afridi in. Spinner on. First ball. Long-off? Long-on? Sweeper cover? Swung straight to long-off, this time. Sigh.

The presence of mind
Gul fell off the last ball of the 19th over after a blinder. Even as sweeper cover ran in to take the catch, Gul sprinted down the pitch for a possible run. The non-striker Umar Akmal was wise enough to stop, and also told Gul to, ensuring they didn't cross. It proved to be decisive as Umar Akmal took strike for the final over and swung the second ball over deep square leg for six to all but ensure Pakistan's win.

The maiden - I
Raza Hasan, 20, beginner in international cricket to Jacques Kallis, 36, legend in international cricket. He even beat Kallis a couple of times in the over.

The maiden(s) - II
South Africa responded with consecutive maidens, one each by Robin Peterson and Johan Botha, who also bowled Kamran Akmal during his.

Abhishek Purohit is an editorial assistant at ESPNcricinfo

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Posted by   on (September 30, 2012, 6:39 GMT)

After almost 2 decades of top level cricket even average players would improve their game and some even become great players. Afridi is one of the very few who has gone in the opposite direction, and before you harp on about his bowling (no great shakes in the last 12 months), it was his batting and in particular the 37 ball century that cemented his place in the team. If the whole of Pakistan just wants to salivate over an Afridi six, dump him from the team and go watch him in the nets!!

Posted by   on (September 29, 2012, 18:14 GMT)

@ Imran Awan: Umar Gul faced 5 balls from Steyn and scored 1 run; 4 balls from M. Morkel and scored 5 runs. @ Khalid Abowath: Afridi does not waste any balls when he fails with the bat, but the team loses one wicket. Full credit to Gul for winning the match after the top order tried to lose the match.

Posted by   on (September 29, 2012, 5:12 GMT)

So, When everyone in this world is afraid of Steyn, Morkel and co. Then Umar gul showed the way how to hit them out of ground. How many players in this world can paly same innings against S.A as gul did, I think no one can play in such a pressure that gul did. Kallis, Amla and co don't know how to play Pak bowlers. Pakistan has shut the mouth of their haters by exposing S.A batting and S.A bowling and also lazy amla fielding.

Posted by   on (September 29, 2012, 4:28 GMT)

Afridi is NOT a liability. His inclusion is very well justified by his bowling. Batting is a bonus when it works. Also when he fails with the bat, he does not waste any balls.

Posted by   on (September 29, 2012, 4:18 GMT)

Good addition as Raza Hassan. now Pakistan can switch between Raza Hassan & Saeed Ajmal, just to make it more unpredictable. Go Pakistan Go

Posted by   on (September 29, 2012, 4:07 GMT)

calm down peeps.... So you think that the greats like Amla and Kallis can fall for nothing, kamran and shoaib shoulda scores tons?? give yourself a break... pak bowled well and contained SA under 150..... in return SA bowled well and contained pakistan but not enough... end of the day pak edged away and pulled out a beauty... it donr mean that pak played bad...

the better team won... be happy

Posted by Zahidsaltin on (September 29, 2012, 0:55 GMT)

All the Pakistani MAIN BATSMEN did their best to lose the match but AB de Villiers won over them all to present it to pakistan in a golden plate. Dumminy 2 overs for 5 runs and Botha 2 overs for 10 runs didn't get the ball while a mediocre Albie Morkel was given the ball.

Posted by Zahidsaltin on (September 29, 2012, 0:52 GMT)

UMAR GUL must find his line and length in bowling. We are happy that he did what others were meant to do but GUL must find his bowling touch which he is renowned for. It was a much better combination today although many fans would like Razzaq to be in the playing 11. Sohail Tanveer must not be broght back in the playing squad.

Posted by Shazia_Javed on (September 28, 2012, 22:28 GMT)

Well done Umar and Gul. SA bowlers didn't bowl yorkers & that resulted in Gul to swing the ball well. While Pakistan won this match, most of us will forget the horrible mistakes that were made during the chase of relativly easy target. Nasir Jamshed showed that the so-called 'Miandad factor' is contributing not a 'BIT' in improving the batsmen's mindsets. The coaches and the staff are not helping the team to develop the mentality to read the game plan & execute accordingly. Kamran played a horrible shot... Afridi, I wonder how long it will take the management & the fans & Afridi to call it the 'Day'. Shoaib Malik-Mr.Experience, what worth he has in playing such innings? any first class batsman can perform better. He seriously has some good contacts to be in this team after all such performances. Razzaq is being wasted. The way Yasir/Tanvir are performing, Razzaq can easily beat them on the bowling form, not forgetting his much added value with the bat. Pakistan got lucky today!

Posted by wc1992 on (September 28, 2012, 21:22 GMT)


Posted by SurlyCynic on (September 28, 2012, 20:11 GMT)

Blunder of the day 1: AB coming in below Berhardien. Just compare to the way India use their best batsman, Kohli. Blunder of the day 2: Giving the 17th over to Albie when Botha had been economical and had two overs left. Well played Pakistan but bizarre captaincy from AB. Seems like he always wants to prove he's 'not predictable' even when it makes no sense.

Posted by Syed_imran_abbas on (September 28, 2012, 19:11 GMT)

Gullay guldozer rocks... No better way to took your frustration out but to beat with bat if bowls dont work for u. Umar Akmal played a inning of his career so far. He has alot to learn from this own innings.

Posted by BowledYa on (September 28, 2012, 18:31 GMT)

Agree 100% with Zia Rehman. I live in USA so did not get to see the match on TV but read here, at times ball by ball commentary. I think Hafeez was planning to win by a big margin and scoring a high run rate, but that was a mistake. First you take care of the win and then worry about the run rate. In the process he almost lost the match. Afridi is a liability. Like Sehwag for India we should bench him. 1 performance in 10 matches - anyone can do better than that.

Posted by   on (September 28, 2012, 17:50 GMT)

Speaking of maidens galore: How about that maiden wicket from Ajmal where he made the South African opener look like a club cricketer bowling him round his legs?

Posted by   on (September 28, 2012, 17:23 GMT)

South Africans ran out of gas in last five overs, whereas, The Umars pressed the pedal to earn the checker flag. In such a short format the pendulum kept on swinging in both teams favor. It was amazing. On the other hand, Aussies' performance is alarming for other teams. I foresee Pakistan, Australia, England and Windies in the semis. Good luck everyone.. but hats of to unpredictable beauties of Pakistani camp.

Posted by   on (September 28, 2012, 17:23 GMT)

well we see these type of matches are very rare...yet pakistan has put another memorable moment at their list

Posted by Ray24 on (September 28, 2012, 16:34 GMT)

Excellent knock from Gul, lone ranger for Pakistan. Despite all the efforts from Kamran and Shoaib to lose it for Pakistan, it wasn't to be. Hopefully Shoaib will be shown the exit door as he is not good enough. Kamran missed the simplest stumping in the first over of the day, not unusual for him. Wonder what it will take to get rid of him. Pakistan should include someone else instead of these two fixers.

Posted by SHANI15121472 on (September 28, 2012, 15:51 GMT)

great win. Both umars show their class.

Posted by   on (September 28, 2012, 15:30 GMT)

why does it say "the Super Eights match between England and West Indies in Pallekele" under the title?

Posted by   on (September 28, 2012, 15:05 GMT)

As Happy as I am , Pakistan need to sort out their Batting blunders and not get too happy on the win ! this wasn't an anomaly that it could be overlooked, Umar Gul is NOT going to rescue Pak with the Bat every game!

Need to get on it! Also i hope next time Pak bat i see Shahid Afridi listed as the # 11, if hes going to claim to be a bowler , then he should have to see that reflected in the batting order, maybe then he will give his batting some thought rather than taking it for granted based on past Glory!

Nice work from Raza Hassan, i feel very happy for these young spinners, now if only we could get another Amir ( who wont cheat obviously) we have a good future!

Also Glad Jamshed got out the way he did, I think his success was getting to his head , best he come down to earth and not become another Afridi!

Posted by Warsmart1 on (September 28, 2012, 14:47 GMT)

So angry,what was de villiers thinking taking Botha and Duminy off after they had done so well.Surely after Kallis was bashed about Albie morkel should have been the last person to bowl.Why not even let Botha bowl last over.I though the constant changing of the batting line up was ridiculous but that was untill the bowling changes.

Posted by Surajdon9 on (September 28, 2012, 14:38 GMT)

You beauty Gulldozer......absolutely fantastic knock.....

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