Babar century sets up last-ball win for Pakistan

His 103 trumps van der Dussen’s unbeaten 123 for hosts

A century by Babar Azam set up a three-wicket last-ball win for Pakistan in the first ODI against South Africa at SuperSport Park on Friday.

Chasing a target of 274, Babar and Imam-ul-Haq (70) put on 177 for the second wicket, taking the visitors to within 88 runs of victory with 18.2 overs left when the former was caught behind off speedster Anrich Nortje. Babar hit a stroke-filled 103 off 104 balls, but his dismissal triggered a collapse as Nortje took four wickets in four overs.

Mohammad Rizwan and Shadab Khan steadied the innings with a sixth-wicket stand of 53 before both fell. However, Faheem Ashraf hit the winning run off the final ball.

Earlier, Rassie van der Dussen’s unbeaten 123, his maiden International century, lifted the hosts to 273 for six.

South Africa was struggling at 55 for four before van der Dussen and David Miller (50) revived the innings with a fourth-wicket stand of 116.

Van der Dussen, 32, had been dismissed three times in the 90s — twice in ODIs and once in a Test — since making his debut two seasons ago. However, his effort was overshadowed by Babar and Pakistan on this day.

The scores: South Africa 273/6 in 50 overs (Rassie van der Dussen 123 n.o., David Miller 50) lost to Pakistan 274/7 in 50 overs (Babar Azam 103, Imam-ul-Haq 70, Mohammad Rizwan 40, Anrich Nortje 4/51).

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