Clinical Pakistan beat SA

Mohammad Yousuf carved out the only half century of Tuesday's match to guide Pakistan to a six-wicket win over South Africa.

updated: October 25, 2007 06:49 IST
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Mohammad Yousuf carved out the only half century of Tuesday's match to guide Pakistan to a six-wicket win over South Africa in the third limited-overs international.

The victory gave Pakistan a 2-1 advantage in the five-match series.

Yousuf shared a match-winning 79-run stand with captain Shoaib Malik (42) to wipe out the 198-run target in 48.1 overs after South Africa was bowled out for 197 in 49.2 overs.

Yousuf, who scored a century in the second game in Lahore on Saturday, stood firm on a slow wicket and remained unbeaten on 58 off 113 balls, hitting just one boundary.

Misbah-ul-Haq (29 not out) added another 55 runs with Yousuf and hoisted Albie Morkel for six over mid-wicket to raise Pakistan victory.

Shahid Afridi had given Pakistan a blistering start (32 off 18 balls) in its run-chase with Yasir Hameed (18) after Pakistan tried third opening pair in as many games.

Afridi, dropped by Jacques Kallis on 12, took 26 in Shaun Pollock's two overs that included two straight sixes and three boundaries.

South Africa hit back briefly when captain Graeme Smith held onto a hard Afridi drive at mid-off to give some consolation to Pollock, while Hameed, playing for the first time in the series was also neatly caught by Kallis.

Younis Khan struggled for his 10 runs but departed after flicking Morkel to Johan Botha at mid-wicket before Yousuf shared two half century partnerships.

Earlier, medium-fast Rao Iftikhar took a career best 3-33 and leg-spinner Afridi (3-37) restricted South Africa to 197 after Smith won the toss and elected to bat.

Smith top-scored with a fighting 48 off 68 balls while vice-captain Justin Kemp hit two sixes to score 42 before the visitors were bowled out.

South Africa's batsmen struggled to score on a slow Iqbal Stadium wicket where Afridi got appreciable turn and Iftikhar kept them in check with his disciplined bowling.

Pakistan put up a much-improved performance in the field than in Lahore last Saturday where they dropped at least five catches before levelling the five-match series with a 25-run victory.

Herschelle Gibbs (19) struck four boundaries and also became only the second South Africa batsman to score over 7,000 runs in limited-overs games after Kallis.

Gibbs shared an opening stand of 43 runs with Smith before he departed in the ninth over when fast bowler Umar Gul found the outside edge.

Afridi got the prized wicket off an out-of-form Kallis, who struggled for 32 balls to make 13 runs, as Misbah took a fine low catch in the covers.

Afridi also took a splendid one-handed diving catch at mid-wicket to dismiss AB de Villiers (17) as South Africa's innings failed to pick up any momentum.

Afridi chipped in with two more wickets in his return spell, clean bowling Kemp and then taking a low return catch of Shaun Pollock (1).

Iftikhar also added two more wickets late in the innings when Morkel (12) holed out in the deep and Charl Langeveldt (4) was clean bowled.

The fourth game of the series will be played in Multan on Friday.