South Africa 158-4 (20 overs)
Quinton de Kock 70(47), Rassie van der Dussen 37(26); Kane Richardson 2/21
Australia: 146-6 (20 overs)
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The South African bowlers stepped up after a disappointing first T20I to come back and beat Australia by 12 runs and level the series 1-1. Skipper Quinton de Kock was the star of the show with a magnificent knock of 70.
Chasing 159 to win, Australia got off to a flier again as Aaron Finch and David Warner added just 40 runs in 4 overs. Although Finch lost his wicket, Steve Smith joined Warner and for a large part of the chase Australia seemed to be coasting to a victory. But when Lungi Ngidi broke the partnership between Warner and Alex Carey by dismissing the latter, things began to change and South Africa were able to take wickets at regular intervals, thus putting a break over the run-flow. In the final over, Australia needed 17 runs but Warner lost the strike on the first ball and was left stranded on 67 as Australia fell 12 runs short.
Earlier, South Africa too got off to a flying start thanks to skipper de Kock who continued his fantastic form. De Kock scored 70 off just 47 balls and laid an excellent foundation for the other batsmen to build on. However, South Africa lost wickets at crucial junctures. Thanks to a late cameo from Rassie van der Dussen of 37, South Africa managed to reach 158-4 in their 20 overs.
Also see - India New Zealand head to head
Quinton de Kock's purple patch continues
Proteas skipper de Kock seemed to be batting in another league completely as he provided yet another blazing start to his team. De Kock took full advantage of the field restrictions and tonked the Australian bowlers to all sides of the park. He scored 70 runs off just 47 balls which included 5 fours and 4 sixes. Scoring almost 50% of his team's runs, de Kock proved yet again that he is an important asset for the Proteas at the top of the order.
David Warner's 67* goes in vain
Warner had missed out on the first T20I but did not repeat this mistake as he gave a solid start to the Australian chase alongside skipper Finch.
After Finch's dismissal, Warner did not let the momentum slip and continued the strong start by forming crucial partnerships with Steve Smith and then Alex Carey.
Carey's dismissal was followed by a flurry of wickets and Australia seemed to lose their momentum. Warner still tried to be there till the end and took the game to the final over where Australia required 17 runs. In the final over, Warner took a single of the first ball and lost the strike. Australia ended up falling 12 runs short but Warner played a great knock of 67 in just 56 balls which included 5 fours and a six.
In the end, it were de Kock's precious runs at the top of the order that was the difference between the two sides and thus he was adjudged the player of the match.
Here were his thoughts after the game -
I've realized that the new ball is key while batting. It gets difficult at the end so we capitalized on the powerplay. I know it's difficult to chase a target like this here and we knew that and we pulled it off. In international cricket we need to understand what needs to be done and I'm really proud of the boys. I think a couple of games before this our death bowling struggled, and we had a good chat, but the boys came out here and stuck to the plans to execute brilliantly. It'll be a good game, expecting a good wicket, so hopefully the boys come up there and perform well.Published 24 Feb 2020, 00:01 IST