Sidra Ameen guided Pakistan to a seven-wicket victory and an unassailable 2-0 lead in the women’s T20I series against the Proteas in Karachi on Sunday.
The opening batter dispatched six fours and a six on her way to a 44-ball 61 as the hosts chased down South Africa’s first innings total of 150-3, which featured notable contributions from openers Tazmin Brits (46) and Laura Wolvaardt (41).
Similar to the opening encounter, Pakistan won the toss and sent the visitors into bat, with Brits and Wolvaardt putting on 74 runs for the first wicket. The latter was the first to fall after looking to be the aggressor, with Nashra Sandhu (1-24) claiming the breakthrough scalp.
With the combination of a slower deck compared to the first T20I as well as disciplined bowling from the home side, Brits and all-rounder Marizanne Kapp (26) battled to keep the scoreboard ticking as they put on 37 runs for the second wicket before Brits was eventually dismissed for a 48-ball 46 to leave the Proteas 111-2 in the 17th over.
Although Kapp was dismissed just two overs later, an electric cameo from all-rounder Nadine de Klerk (21), which included 13 runs in the final over, helped South Africa reach a respectable total.
Iqbal was Pakistan’s pick of the bowlers, ending with figures of 1-22 in her four overs.
With the bat, the hosts picked up where they left off from the first game and despite losing opener Shawaal Zulfiqar (four) early on, Pakistan took control of the contest through Ameen and former captain Bismah Maroof (27) with a 68-run stand to help propel them to 91-2 in the 13th over.
Despite both batters being sent back to the dugout in quick succession, with spinners Nonkululeko Mlaba (2-20) and Delmi Tucker (1-24) picking up the vital wickets, Pakistan refused to let their foot off the gas as Aliya Riaz (31*) and Mubeena Ali (26*) combined well to take their team over the line.
The pair put on a match-winning, 54-run partnership for the fourth wicket to seal a momentous win with five balls to spare.
The third and final match takes place on Monday (4:30pm SA time) at the same venue.