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Phehlukwayo stars with Van Der Dussen as Proteas level series

Man of the Match Phehlukwayo (69* off 80 balls) and Van der Dussen (80* off 123 balls) produced the innings that the Proteas would ideally want from their batsman involved in a World Cup chase.

Proteas batsmen Andile Phehlukwayo and Rassie van der Dussen have a chat in between overs. Picture: @OfficialCSA/Twitter

CAPE TOWN - Andile Phehlukwayo had an inspired performance and achieved career bests with both bat and ball as he and Rassie van der Dussen, in only in his second ODI, earned the Proteas a series-levelling victory by five wickets with 48 balls to spare over Pakistan in the second ODI at Kingsmead.

The low target might suggest a comfortable victory, however, it was anything but as Pakistan were well on top at certain stages through outstanding performances by Hasan Ali with the bat and Shaheen Afridi and Shadan Khan with the ball.

Hasan inspired a Pakistan fightback from an alarming 114/8 with only 18 overs left in the innings as he shared a ninth-wicket record partnership for Pakistan of 90 off 80 balls with his captain, Sarfraz Ahmed, with the wicketkeeper also playing in his 100th ODI.

Hasan finished on 59 (45 balls) while Sarfraz scored a supporting 41 (59 balls).

Their total of 203 was suddenly competitive when it seemed that South Africa would blow them away cheaply.

Then the young left-arm quick Shaheen ripped through the Proteas top order, taking three wickets in his first three overs.

Leg-spinner Shadab Khan backed him up by dismissing David Miller and Heinrich Klaasen in consecutive balls, leaving the Proteas in a perilous spot at 80/5, a long way away from their target.

Man of the Match Phehlukwayo (69* off 80 balls) and Van der Dussen (80* off 123 balls) produced the innings that the Proteas would ideally want from their batsman involved in a World Cup chase.

Their partnership of 127 was a Kingsmead ground record and included Phehlukwayo’s maiden ODI half-century.

He also had career-best bowling figures of 4/22 and for good measure took two catches off the bowling of Kagiso Rabada in the opening power play for one of the most complete all-round performances.

Phehlukwayo, like Rabada, seems to have been around for a long time but he is even younger than Rabada at 22. He has certainly put up his hand as a contender for the critical No. 7 batting all-rounder position in the Proteas' first choice line-up.

He rode his luck at times but there was no denying the quality of his strokeplay, especially his power hitting straight down the ground.

Van der Dussen has now made an aggregate of 173 runs in his first two ODI’s, the highest by a South African after two innings. The Lions batsman has been prolific across all three formats domestically and might well have secured a spot on the plane to the World Cup.

The third ODI takes place at SuperSport Park on Friday.

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