Pakistan v South Africa, 4th ODI, Abu Dhabi November 8, 2013

When Afridi turned captain

Plays of the day from the fourth ODI between Pakistan and South Africa in Abu Dhabi

Drop of the day
Quinton de Kock has Mohammad Hafeez to thank for the part he played in helping the 20-year-old notch up his maiden international century. De Kock's old weakness outside the off stump combined with his youthful impatience was exposed by Sohail Tanvir at the beginning of the fourth over. Tanvir offered a good-length ball with a bit of width, de Kock flashed and edged but Hafeez at first slip, spilled the ball as he tried to take it with fingers pointing upwards. De Kock was on 2 at the time and made the most of his opportunity, going on to record his first ton on the biggest stage. 

Pushiness of the day
Shahid Afridi used to be Pakistan's captain but isn't any more and he seemed to forget that in a moment of excitement when he was convinced he had Faf du Plessis lbw. The slider rapped the No. 3 on the front pad but Afridi's exuberant appeal was turned down. Without waiting to see what anyone else thought, Afridi began signally for a review, making the T-shaped sign every which way he could. Misbah-ul-Haq was considering what to do as Afridi persisted with the gesture and eventually his hand was forced into sending the decision upstairs. Replays showed the ball clipping the outside of leg stump and the umpire's call standing. 

Shot of the day
Ryan McLaren's lower-order hitting does not get much recognition but he starred yet again, in a 52-run stand with JP Duminy to push South Africa over 250. His best shot came off the last ball when Tanvir missed the yorker and the length was McLaren's steering wheel to drive. He got underneath the ball and smacked it through extra cover with merciless timing to end South Africa's innings with force. 

Words of the day
Dale Steyn enjoys getting the better of Hafeez, perhaps partly because he has done so on so many occasions. He did not get the opportunity to get stuck into Hafeez in the previous match because Steyn was not given the new ball. So when he was this time, he took the chance to make the Pakistan opener feel uncomfortable, even though Hafeez did not face him at first. Steyn was "non-abusive", in the words of the commentator, with Hafeez immediately after the one ball Hafeez faced in Steyn's second over but before he could continue the conversation, the umpires stumped in and told Steyn to pipe down.

Wicketkeeper in fielder's clothing
One of the arguments against de Villiers keeping wickets is founded on his ability to contribute in the field and he showed why that was the case today. When Hafeez nudged the ball to him in the covers, de Villiers gathered quickly and threw almost as he picked it up to de Kock. Shehzad tried to beat the throw and almost did but his bat bounced in the air to find him short of his crease. Pakistan lost their first wicket through mere carelessness and one fielder's unmatched ability to anticipate.

Firdose Moonda is ESPNcricinfo's South Africa correspondent

Comments have now been closed for this article

  • Android on November 12, 2013, 0:22 GMT

    dear pak friends for god sake please spare the cricket lovers around the world of afridi torture how long will you guys bare with him for fastest hunderd made million yrs ago. pak has worst batting lineup of all major teams. minus ur fast bowling u guys would be worst than west indies and new zeland. which team plays with only 4 specialist batsmen. hafiz and afridi are worst than australian tail enders. they might bat more responsibly. someone said misbah is slow lol if he played fast and got out current pak team will nit get past 40 overs in most matches. and he is no great batsmen either. seems like there is no effort to improve and invest long term only quick fixes.

  • Manesh on November 11, 2013, 6:52 GMT

    Pakistan is wasting time with tested and failed Afridi. Performing once in every 10 or 15 match is not a good for an international player (until the team can afford it).

  • Dummy4 on November 10, 2013, 19:19 GMT

    i have been dayiong hard fan of PAK team but it hurt aslot when u see so close to victory and ends in defeat..... if i am captn or slector my team wod be 1. Shahzad 2. jamshaid. 3 sohaib/haris 4. Misbah 5. fawad 6. umar akmal 7. razzaq/ hammad 8. gul/bilwal /anwar 9.ajmal 10 irfan 11 junaid , this team has impect player in top order thy can set the tempo then left right combination in middle oder and can fire power down the order and experince of razzaq i think no need of afridi and hafeez we dont need six bowler who can bowl 10 over fawad ,maqsood and razaq can make 5th bowler we need to devolp team for australian condition for worldcup 2015 not spin pack bowling attack.................

  • amer on November 10, 2013, 14:50 GMT

    Be honest some body telll me ... mohammad haffez place in ODI as a opener who scored with an averge of 28 in 133 ODI's and still he is in team because,,,he can bowl... what rubbush exuse that is.. sack him from team and bring geniune opener and afridi once said that once i ll feel i donot have place in team i ll leave my self.. now he should realize that he should leave and give chance to a good all rounder... we now playing in our team with only 3-4 bastmens.. shahzad,misbah, asad and maqsood... rest of 4 bowlers,,, and 3 allrounders haffez,afridi and umer akmal also.. i donot know the rest of world,, regarding the meaning of allrounder but after seeing the pak all rounders their is only word comes.. a player who cant bat/bowl/feild is a geniune allrounder.. we have to change thinking that if haffez and afridi will go our bowlint attachk will weak... just realize the era of wasim or imran when we have only one spiner mushi/saqlain and 4 fast bowlers,,,so plz grow up yar....

  • Jay on November 10, 2013, 14:17 GMT

    How long will this Afridi+Hafeez joke continue?

  • Muhammad on November 10, 2013, 11:43 GMT

    Pakistan lacks a quality finisher. Sohaib Maqsood can turn into one. Umar Amkal and Maqsood should swap places for next game i.e. Akmal at 3 and Maqsood at 6.

  • Dummy4 on November 10, 2013, 8:34 GMT

    Afridi is upsetting the balance of the team. He is played as an all-rounder, which he is not. Granted he gets a few wickets, but the team looks up to him for his fast scoring. Due to his irresponsible behaviour and inability to read the game, he is proving to be a liability. It is better to drop him and find a genuine all-rounder. Unfortunately, we tend to call any bowler who can bat for one over or more, an all-rounder, like we do with Sohail Tanwir.

    Umar Akmal should also be dropped as he is not learning and definitely not world class. The selectors should look for some one like Kohli or Rohit Sharma.

    Lets not talk about bringing back Imran Nazir or Taufique Umar or any player who has been in and out of the Pakistan team. Look for and groom yougsters and for God,s sake forget the Akmal brothers and find a decent permanent wicketkeeper who can serve the team efficiently.

  • Nasir on November 10, 2013, 8:28 GMT

    Sohaib Maqsood has showed glimpses of courageous batting. This is how a number 3 batsman should bat in ODI. Positive approach is required. Afridi and Hafeez should counted as bowlers in the team. They both are assets for the team as bowlers and almost in every match they bowl full quota of 10 overs. At least one specialist batsmen should be added in the batting order. Our batting order looks funny with senior batsmen having batting averages of under 25. Our tail of so called all-rounders is costing us matches after matches.

  • Nasir on November 10, 2013, 8:19 GMT

    People, please find a better excuse than cursing Misbah after the rest of the batsmen just come and go to and from the crease. Pakistan team has too many passengers in the name of so called talented batsmen who are not skilled enough to hit the ball properly. They try their best though but their skills are limited. If they try to force a shot they get out and unfortunately even if they do not go for shots, they still get out by playing few balls more than their normal stay at the wicket. Pakistan team plays with bowlers and Misbah.

  • Dummy4 on November 10, 2013, 8:03 GMT

    Pak's chasing was always terrible but now it has reached new heights of awfulness!when you need 45 from 36 with 5 wickets in hand you think the match is in the bag.All you need is a couple of good overs which never come for Pakistan.Misbah should have provided those overs, but that is not to say Umar and Afridi are innocent.This is their role in the team all no6&7 have the same role to get the quick rus in the end to either give a strong finish to set a target or to complete a possibly nervous run chase.If Afridi's role does not include batting then the whole team balance is messed up,you have Ajmal,Tanvir,Junaid,Irfan and Afridi 5 players playing as only bowlers which is unimaginable in odis.If Afridi is to play only as a bowler then why not pick Zulfiqar a full time genuine and slightly better spinner in his place?You can blame Misbah but he did play out the middle overs which is his primary role and brought us close to the target, finishing the match by him would have been a bonus

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