Bangladesh made history on Wednesday with an emphatic nine-wicket victory over South Africa in the third ODI to win the series 2-1. Kobus Pretorius reports.
The defeat in Sunday’s second game was written off as a ‘bad day at the office’ but the same excuse can’t be offered this time around.
This is the first time Bangladesh have ever beaten South Africa in a series, and they deserved it.
South Africa were outplayed; comfortably and alarmingly so. The hype surrounding this Bangladeshi team has been justified as they add South Africa to a growing pile of big name scalps in 2015.
The Tigers have now won four consecutive series against Zimbabwe, Pakistan, India and South Africa which makes them a legitimate threat in the 50-over format when playing at home.
Again Hashim Amla won the toss and batted first and again they lost by failing to post a competitive target for the hosts to chase.
South Africa’s batters struggled throughout their innings and after a lengthy rain delay they managed to reach a below par 168-9 in their allotted 40 overs.
Again the top order failed and again the bowlers failed to make any sort of impact. It was almost as if the two teams batted on two different pitches.
The only positive for South Africa was the fact that JP Duminy got some runs.
Where the Proteas batsmen struggled for rhythm and momentum, Bangladesh made batting looked easy and chased down the target with no pressure on them whatsoever.
Serious questions needs to be asked about Quinton de Kocks (6 from 17) place in the side. His continued selection can no longer be justified. Players have been dropped in the past for less.
Also under pressure is Amla who was dropped on 13, but was caught behind shortly after for 15 as South Africa limped to 50-4.
The visitors struggled to rotate the strike and boundaries were few and far between.
David Miller and Duminy (51) started to settle in before the rain came pouring down. Miller looked the most comfortable out in the middle and continued to attack the spinners with sweep shots before he sliced a ball which wasn’t quite wide enough straight to point for 44.
It was a big wicket for the Bangladeshis with just 10 overs remaining in the innings. Farhaan Behardien didn’t last long and Duminy had to continue batting with the tail-enders. He reached his fifty from 67 balls.
Bangladesh looked comfortable out in the middle from the start of their chase and made stroke play look easy on the same pitch their opposition batted on.
The inclusion of Morne Morkel made no difference as he conceded more than seven runs an over in his first five overs.
In the end, Bangladesh cruised to the target of 170 (adjusted by the Duckworth/Lewis-method) with 14 overs to spare thanks to Soumya Sarkar (90 from 75) and Tamim Iqbal (61 not out).
Sarkar’s 90 is the highest score by a Bangladesh batsmen against South Africa.
Bangladesh deserve credit for the way they bowled and how they batted. For South Africa, serious questions need to be asked of certain individuals and their continued selection.