CT 2017, Match 7: PAK v SA, CT Player of the Match - Hasan Ali

CT 2017, Match 7: PAK v SA, CT Player of the Match – Hasan Ali

For his brilliant bowling performance, Hasan Ali was not just awarded the Man of the Match but we have also picked him as CricTracker’s Player of the Match.

Hasan Ali Pakistan
Pakistan’s Hasan Ali. (Photo by LINDSEY PARNABY/AFP/Getty Images)

If we say it was Hasan Ali who made the difference with the ball for Pakistan in this match, it won’t be an overstatement as the right-arm pacer brought in as the second change bowler in the 23rd over hit, hammered and broke the backbone of the South African batting to authorise their control on the game. For Pakistan to win this game against the number one seeded side in the tournament it was important for their bowlers to restrict the Proteas to something manageable.

Imad Wasim who was handed over the new ball in the previous encounter against India was first played with caution and then thrashed only for the decision to backfire at Sarfraz Ahmed. He was brought in as the first change bowler today and struck on the second ball of his spell to send back the ever so consistent South African opener Hashim Amla.

Mohammad Hafeez didn’t bowl in the last game but this time was handed over the ball and he got the skipper the prized scalp of Quinton de Kock who would’ve just been planning to turn the heat on.

Tight bowling

Two early wickets helped Hasan Ali who began his spell in the middle of the innings. He bowled really tight lines. The right-armer mixed up the length balls, the back of the length and the fuller deliveries along with the short stuff to strangle the South African batsmen. He also used the bouncer and cutters to great effect.

On the second ball of his over Ali had the big wicket of Faf du Plessis. He punched the air and had his hands in the air. The 23-year-old is the most potent Pakistani bowler with his variations – he doesn’t rely on just swing but can also seam the ball and smartly uses his cutters. Against Faf he got the ball to nip in from back of the length and the batter wasn’t expecting it to move off the surface. It took the inside edge and shattered his timber.

Deeper into his spell the pacer had only conceded 6 runs after 3 overs and one could sense the pressure building up. That is when he got the wicket of JP Duminy. Ali changed his angle and drew the batsman forward who managed a thick outside edge. It still required some effort to become a wicket and Babar Azam at first slip took a good catch to materialise this chance into a wicket.

Twin strikes

Wayne Parnell fancies his chances of hitting a few blows but not tonight as the pacer didn’t allow him any space to breathe before dishing out a cracking delivery at him. It pitched on the middle stump and straightened just enough to give Parnell’s bat a miss but went on to kiss the top of his off-stump. A dismissal that makes every bowler proud. That was skill beating skill and Ali was on a hat-trick now.

He bowled another maiden to follow up his double-wicket over. South Africa were in serious trouble now and the bone of their back was shattered into pieces. Hasan wasn’t asked by the skipper to complete his spell as he ended up with mind blowing figures of 8-1-24-3.

His performance ensured South African batsmen were always under the hammer and they were restricted to an under par 219. During Pakistan‘s chase, they started off well with debutant Fakhar Zaman playing an attacking knock to give them early impetus. It was yet another rain abandoned game but with 27 overs of play already covered Pakistan were 19 runs ahead of the par score and were thus awarded the match by that margin as per D/L method.

For his brilliant bowling performance, Hasan Ali was not just awarded the Man of the Match but we have also picked him as CricTracker’s Player of the Match.