Pakistan kept their heads above water as they defeated South Africa by 33 runs via the DLS method in a rain-interrupted match here at Sydney Cricket Ground (SCG) on Thursday (November 3). The Pakistan side dominated Proteas in all three departments in a must-win game for them and with this win, theyve kept their semifinal hopes alive.

Chasing a revised target of 142 from 14 overs, South Africa could only score 108 for 9 as their batting was a major letdown against Pakistan. It was their fourth successive defeat in the T20 World Cup against Pakistan, who are undefeated by the Proteas in this showpiece event.

Captain and opener Temba Bavuma – who has been facing a lot of criticism for his batting – top-scored for South Africa with a 19-ball 36 while Aiden Markram made 20.

Shaheen Shah Afridi was the most successful Pakistan bowler with figures of 3/14 while spin bowling all-rounder Shadab Khan bagged two wickets in one over to derail SA’s charge in pursuit of 186 before the rain stopped play.

SA were 69 for four in nine overs when the skies opened up, forcing the players to leave the ground. Heinrich Klaasen (2) and Tristan Stubbs (2) were batting when play was stopped. South Africa were 15 runs behind the DLS par score of 85 when rain stopped play.

SA – who were without the services of their in-form finisher David Miller in this game – missed the left-handed batter dearly in the big run chase.

Earlier, Shadab led Pakistan’s strong batting display with a scintillating 22-ball 52 and propelled their team to 185 for nine. Besides Shadab, Iftikhar Ahmed made 51 in 35 balls and anchored the innings after they were tottering at 43/4 in the seventh over.

Shadab, who reached his half-century in 20 balls, struck four sixes and three fours in his whirlwind knock. Opting to bat after winning the toss, Pakistan lost an early wicket in Mohammed Rizwan, who played on after being cramped for room by a Wayne Parnell delivery that nipped back just enough to create problems for the batter.

It was yet another occasion in the ongoing showpiece that Pakistan failed to get a promising start. However, the Men in Green revived themselves in the middle over by their middle-order batters and even finished with a flourish to post 185/9.