Proteas captain Temba Bavuma says the “gods were with them” after pulling off a one wicket win over Pakistan in a sensational finish to their Cricket World Cup match in Chennai on Friday.
South Africa were well on course for a comfortable win at 206/4 after bowling out Pakistan for 270 (Tabraiz Shamsi taking 4/60), but Aiden Markram’s dismissal for a brilliant 91 gave Pakistan a sniff of victory.
It was left to the last pair of Keshav Maharaj (7*) and Tabraiz Shamsi (4*) to score the last 11 runs for South Africa’s fifth win in six games.
They got there in the end, with Bavuma saying: “I do think we could have shown a lot more of a clinical display in going about that run chase. I think we did have luck on our side. We did give them opportunities to get into the game.”
Markram added 70 for the fifth wicket with David Miller (29) to lift his team from 136/4 before they lost the next five wickets for 54 runs.
Bavuma says players were jumping up and down in the dying moments, explaining: “It was a little bit chaotic now with the guys jumping around. I think obviously at the end as well, we were all on the edge of our seats.”
He adds: “I think the gods were with us…”
South Africa have won four matches while batting first and were upset by the Netherlands when they failed to chase a 246-run target.
South Africa next face New Zealand on Wednesday and India on Sunday, before finishing off their pool phase against Afghanistan next Friday.