Twitter Reactions: Mohammad Rizwan’s calm demeanour guides Pakistan to win in opener against South Africa
Babar Azam and Co also registered their highest ever run-chase in T20Is.
Updated - Apr 10, 2021 10:05 pm
The opening T20I between Pakistan and South Africa turned out to be a high-scoring thriller. At the Wanderers Stadium in Johannesburg, both teams fought tooth and nail to come out trumps. But in the end, Babar Azam’s men won by four wickets with one ball left and took a much-needed 1-0 lead in the four-game series. It also happened to be Pakistan’s highest ever chase in the T20I format.
Klaasen and Markram make hay
The Proteas got off to a blazing start after they opted to bat first. Janneman Malan smashed his way to a 16-ball 24 with some audacious strokes off Shaheen Shah Afridi. But Mohammad Nawaz trapped him plumb in front to send him packing. Wihan Lubbe, on T20I debut, got out cheaply to Hasan Ali. But Aiden Markram and skipper Heinrich Klaasen steadied the ship to some extent.
The duo put on 62 runs for the third wicket off 33 balls to put the hosts back on the driver’s seat. Nawaz got rid of Markram, who got a 32-ball 51, to separate the duo. Nevertheless, Klaasen carried on with the good work and scored 50 runs off 28 balls, helping his team to 188 for six in 20 overs. Apart from Nawaz, Hasan also picked two wickets. Haris Rauf and Afridi got one wicket each.
Mohammad Rizwan shows his class
Pakistan had a decent start as well after Mohammad Rizwan and Babar Azam stitched together a 41-run stand for the opening wicket. Beuran Hendricks broke the partnership, picking up the wicket of Babar, who hit three fours to a run-a-ball 14. Fakhar Zaman, then, joined Rizwan and made sure that the required rate wasn’t allowed to escalate much. In the last 10 overs, the visitors needed 103 off 60 balls.
Zaman got out to Tabraiz Shamsi soon after scoring 27 off 19, but Rizwan got to his fifty off 34 deliveries. Shami nipped out Mohammad Hafeez to put more pressure on the Pakistan batting. With 57 required off the last 30 balls, Beuran Hendricks got rid of Haider Ali and Mohammad Nawaz.
The onus was then on Rizwan and Faheem Ashraf to help Pakistan gain momentum. Once they found their feet, they took their team to victory. Rizwan stayed unbeaten on 74 runs off 50 balls with nine fours and two sixes. Faheem Ashraf’s 14-ball 30 also propelled the visiting team.
Here’s how the netizens reacted to Pakistan’s win:
Congratulations boys on winning the first T20I of the series. Highest ever T20I chase for Pakistan. Well played @iMRizwanPak, great contribution by @iFaheemAshraf and well finished by @RealHa55an. Keep fighting till the end. Supporting my team on every ball. #PakistanZindabad
— Shadab Khan (@76Shadabkhan) April 10, 2021
#pakvsSa Rizwon it! Great knock and a great chase.
— Ramiz Raja (@iramizraja) April 10, 2021
@iMRizwanPak Top knock again 👏👏👏. MashALLAH
— Salman Butt (@im_SalmanButt) April 10, 2021
Outstanding chase, top knock by @iMRizwanPak and quick cameo by @iFaheemAshraf and @RealHa55an helped us get through. It couldn’t have been possible without the great job done by the bowlers in the end of our innings. #PakvRSA
— Azhar Mahmood (@AzharMahmood11) April 10, 2021
— Ahmad Shahzad 🇵🇰 (@iamAhmadshahzad) April 10, 2021
— Mir Hamza (@mirhamza_k) April 10, 2021
— Wahab Riaz (@WahabViki) April 10, 2021
What a win, well played team Pakistan. Brilliant knock by Rizwan. Faheem’s batting was special.
— Faizan Lakhani (@faizanlakhani) April 10, 2021
Muhammad Rizwan in last 10 innings in T20s
— Abidullah (@577_abidullah) April 10, 2021
SA's bowling was awful. No excuses for an international team. #SAvPAK
Well played Rizwan 👏
— Cow Corner (@CowCorner183) April 10, 2021
Rizwan is going through an incredible purple patch..
— Waqas. (@VickzTiwana) April 10, 2021
Rizwan carried the bat lol.
— Kashif (@vasto_back) April 10, 2021
— Usama speaks Cricket 🏏 (@LeoUsamaa) April 10, 2021
Rizwan's won us so many T20s lately, sorry but there's no way he should move down or be dropped for Sharjeel.
— Ahson (@Ahson8) April 10, 2021
Rizwan been the man once again proving me wrong again and again.
Well done lads keep going!#PAKvsSA
— Shahzy Ali (@shahzadAli469) April 10, 2021
Mohammad Rizwan again played a wonderful knock. Talk about consistency 👏🏼
— S Hussain (@sabee_7) April 10, 2021
Mohammad Rizwan in last five T20Is is averaging 112.00 and striking at 148.01.
— Mazher Arshad (@MazherArshad) April 10, 2021