South Africa v Pakistan, 1st ODI, Cape Town

Debutants Bhatti and Ali sink South Africa

The Report by Firdose Moonda

November 24, 2013

Comments: 289 | Text size: A | A

Pakistan 218 for 9 (Ali 43*, Bhatti 39, Steyn 3-33) beat South Africa 195 (Kallis 50, Duminy 49, Bhatti 3-37) by 23 runs
Scorecard and ball-by-ball details

Anwar Ali picked up two wickets on his ODI debut, South Africa v Pakistan, 1st ODI, Cape Town, November 24, 2013
Anwar Ali was pivotal to Pakistan's victory, with both bat and ball © AFP

The debutants Anwar Ali and Bilawal Bhatti had been selected primarily to bowl Pakistan to victory. They did that with five wickets between them, headlined by Bhatti's superb use of the yorker at the death. They were not expected to bat Pakistan to a win, but they did that too, with a 74-run partnership for the eighth wicket that breathed life into an innings that was gasping for air.

Pakistan were floundering at about three runs an over for two-thirds their innings before the rookie pair got together to post a defendable total. The buoyancy that stand gave Pakistan was evident in the field. They put in a disciplined performance to strangle South Africa, and even though Jacques Kallis, who was playing in his first ODI in a year and nine months, scored a half-century, the hosts could not find their way back.

With a modest total to defend, Pakistan needed to make early incisions and Junaid Khan bowled Hashim Amla behind his legs in the third over. Misbah-ul-Haq immediately brought on Mohammad Hafeez to trouble Quinton de Kock but the offspinner got the better of Graeme Smith, when the Test captain reached forward to play him on the leg-side and was stumped.

South Africa's oldest and youngest players put on the team's highest partnership - 42. Kallis appeared in particularly good nick, hitting Junaid when he was too full and too short, launching Hafeez over midwicket and pulling Bhatti. He ushered de Kock through nervous periods but the left-hand batsman eventually played a lazy drive and was bowled through the gap between bat and pad.

Still, South Africa had no reason to be concerned, until AB de Villiers was bowled by Shahid Afridi, playing on the back foot when he should have been forward. Kallis was also bowled, by an Anwar Ali delivery that kept low and ricocheted off the toe end of his bat. Anwar also had David Miller caught behind to finish with 2 for 24. South Africa were 123 for 6.

With the big-hitter dismissed, Pakistan gave away only 26 runs in the next seven overs, before Misbah brought Saeed Ajmal back on. The plan worked as Vernon Philander looked to defend but was surprised by one that leapt up and took the edge to give backward point a catch. Duminy had to hold it together but was caught behind reverse-sweeping Ajmal.

South Africa's tail wagged vigorously but Bhatti saved his best for last. Pinpoint yorkers got rid of both Dale Steyn and Morne Morkel to give Pakistan their first ODI win at Newlands, a South African fortress.

In hindsight, South Africa paid for the many chances they missed in the field. Despite the seamers employing tight lines and using the short ball well, it took South Africa 15.2 overs to make the first breakthrough. By then Nasir Jamshed, who was let off three times, and Ahmed Shehzad had posted 49. Steyn dropped Jamshed at fine leg and the batsman was well short of his ground twice while attempting singles, but South Africa could not pull off any direct hits.

Steyn eventually accounted for Jamshed, chasing and edging a ball outside off, and his bunny Mohammad Hafeez, but it was only when Shehzad, Misbah-ul-Haq and Umar Akmal had been dismissed that South Africa dictated proceedings. At 98 for 5, Pakistan could not get out of first gear and Sohaib Maqsood's efforts to do so only created more chances.

He offered Imran Tahir a return catch, which the legspinner dropped, skied one between cover and mid-off that neither Smith nor Philander moved to take, and was dropped by de Villiers at long-off. Kallis eventually claimed Maqsood, when he slogged to mid-on.

Instead of folding from 131 for 7, after Afridi was dismissed, Pakistan ended up accumulating their most important runs. Bhatti and Anwar were together for 11.4 overs, responsibly rotated strike, got a little lucky, and accelerated at the right time.

Anwar took three fours off Kallis' eighth over and Bhatti brought out his power-hitting against Morkel. Both men have first-class centuries to their name and showed the potential to become the seam-bowling allrounders Pakistan have missed for some time.

Firdose Moonda is ESPNcricinfo's South Africa correspondent

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Posted by   on (November 26, 2013, 20:42 GMT)

mzm149, dude, Anwar Ali and Bilawal scored against the same bowlers at the same time, how can you call one of them a fluke? You really are prejudice aren't you?

Posted by mzm149 on (November 26, 2013, 11:44 GMT)

@bouncer709: As if you don't get pain with the selection of non-Karachi players. You always rate Asad Shafiq better than Umar Amin when both fail in a game even knowing Umar Amin has played less games and Asad Shafiq has never ever played a match winning innings in 50 ODIs and has no century to his name. Even after good bowling performance from Hafeez you never appreciate him and are always in favor of dropping him. You always prefer Sarfraz Ahmed over Umar Akmal when Umar Akmal is performing good job as a wicket keeper and is miles ahead of Sarfraz in batting. Expect to receive similar comments from others when you yourself always post biased ones.

Posted by mzm149 on (November 26, 2013, 11:25 GMT)

@bouncer709: People like you and @ICCexpert together with our biased media are hell bent on overrating Karachi players and downgrading others. A good innings from a bowler doesn't make him Kallis or Watson overnight. Wahab Riaz has some good batting innings this year like 45 in Johannesburg, 47* in Dublin, 33 in Abu Dhabi. Sohail Tanvir made 31 in Abu Dhabi. Mohammad Amir had one good innings of 73*. Umar Gul made us win t20 against South Africa with his performance with bat.

Anwar Ali was pathetic with ball in Zimbabwe and in first t20 in Johannesburg. That is why I called him joker. Even today he was very erratic in first over. When he came in second spell, other bowlers had already taken grip on the game. He was not better than Bhatti and Junaid Khan.

Ask Anwar Ali to open innings against South Africa. We will get to know how good he is. Its not easy at all to play new swinging and seaming ball. South African death over bowling is nothing as compared to their new ball spell.

Posted by harsidhu on (November 26, 2013, 7:44 GMT)

Even I m indian i always follow pakistan cricket becoz PAK team is my fav. after india.Pls get rid of Ahmed shezad he is not a batsmen he is just selfish player and this is TRUE.Ask hafeez to bat at no. 7 and get rid of Afridi no. 8 bhatti, 9.10,11 ajmal and 2 fast bowlers. OPEN with abDUR RAZAK and Kmaran akmal, UMAR AKMAL,MAQSOOD,SHOAIB MALIK,MISBAH.

Posted by Pindia on (November 26, 2013, 7:36 GMT)

Bhatti and Anwar put in amazing performances on debut/ re-emergence. They should play in short formats for their batting plus Ajmal and Irfan to complete the bowling attack. Umar Gul has to come back in when he is fit. So for the T20 world cup I would go with: Shehzad, Jamshed, Hafeez, Maqsood, Umar Akmal, Afridi, Bhatti, Anwar, Gul, Ajmal, Irfan. I remember Afridi was in poor form with the bat in the 2007 T20 and came good. If Pakistan have success in the near future it will mainly be due to their bowlers.

Posted by MSMAK on (November 26, 2013, 5:45 GMT)

@Barney: We have known this very fact all along. Thanks to PCB for finally giving Bhatti and Ali a chance. Will this be a turning point for our team selection process?...hmm, only time will tell. BTW - There is still plenty more in the talent pool that have yet to play a match/series. I have my fingers crossed for the next ones.

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