South Africa vs Pakistan 2018-19, 5th ODI: Preview and Predicted Playing XI
Pakistan's exceptional eight-wicket win at Johannesburg has certainly set the stage for a mouthwatering clash for the fans. With an eye on the ODI trophy, hosts South Africa and Pakistan are expected to come out all guns blazing in the series decider on Friday, January 30, at the Newlands in Cape Town.
Head-to-Head Overall: Till date, both teams have clashed against each other on 76 occasions, and South Africa lead the victory sheet at 49-27.
Head-to-Head in South Africa: The Proteas have hosted Pakistan in 32 completed ODI's and leads the clash line 20-12. While at the Newlands, the hosts hold a clear edge over the visitors by winning four out of five head-to-head games.
Previous Clash at the Newlands: The most recent clash between these two played at this venue was during Pakistan's 2013/14 tour. The match was a low-score thriller, with the visitors edging out hosts by 23 runs. Opting to bat, Pakistan didn't have a good start, but due to Anwar Ali's (43*) brilliance at number nine, they managed to post 218/9 in their quota of 50 overs.
In reply, the hosts' top order too flattened against Pakistan, but with Kallis (50) on crease, they seemed to be on course for chasing down the low target, only to be declined by the Man of the Match Ali, who picked up the dangerous Kallis to end the Africans' hopes and as a result, the Proteas were bundled out for 198.
The visitors' win at the Wanderers certainly ignited a new charm in the series, and they will aim to grab the golden opportunity to claim their second series win on African soil.
The Pakistani top order made short work of the low 165-run target and finished the game inside 32 overs to level honours. Imam-ul-Haq made a fantastic 71, while his opening partner Fakhar Zaman missed out on a well-deserved fifty last time.
Babar Azam also played his part by hitting an unbeaten 41 to get the team over the victory line alongside wicketkeeper-batsman Mohammad Rizwan, who came in the ground, with just two runs needed. It took just a solitary delivery for him to end the proceedings, as he wasted no time by directing the first ball he faced, towards the boundary line. If all of them can replicate their supreme show in the decider, then no one can stop them from creating history.
Usman Shinwari's four-wicket haul was the headline for the day, but it was Shaheen Shah Afridi's first spell, that laid the base for the visitors to begin their counter attack. The bowler first removed de Kock for a duck, then followed it up with the wicket of Reeza Hedricks.
These two will be expected to play a similar role in the decider. Shadab Khan, Umad Wasim and Mohammad Amir also played their part and will get the skipper's backing to continue dominance in the decider as well.
Expected Playing XI
Shoaib Malik (C), Mohammad Rizwan, Fakhar Zaman, Imam-ul-Haq, Babar Azam, Mohammad Hafeez, Shadab Khan, Faheem Ashraf, Usman Shinwari, Hasan Ali and Shaheen Shah Afridi.
The Proteas have certainly made a mess of themselves and will aim to avoid lazy mistakes in the series decider to get their hands on the series title.
The Proteas had an off day in batting and seven of their batters were back in the hut, scoring less than five, including three ducks. The only batsmen to show resistance were Hashim Amla and Skipper Faf du Plessis, who managed to get themselves over the 50-run mark. These two have been the most consistent performers for the team and will bear the responsibility to lead their team towards a big total in the decider. Besides, they will also bank on the likes of Rassie Dussen and Quinton de Kock to play their part and to come out with a decent knock.
The poor scores in batting certainly affected their morale while in bowling, they managed just two wickets in the proceedings with one being picked by Tahir, while the other was by Phehlukwayo towards the end. Though most of their bowlers have been quite impressive in previous games, they will need them to make a comeback in the final ODI.
Expected Playing XI
Faf du Plessis (C), Rassie van der Dussen, David Miller, Andile Phehlukwayo, Kagiso Rabada, Dale Steyn, Imran Tahir, Dwaine Pretorius, Quinton de Kock, Hashim Amla and Reeza Hendricks.