Our event of the day is the Fifth ODI between South Africa and Pakistan at Newlands Cricket Ground. The ODI series, part of Pakistan’s tour of South Africa, is tied at 2-2 so it’s all to play for today. Both sides have been at the top of their game, with plenty of runs being scored and plenty of dominant bowling performances. It’s going to be an exciting day of cricket, so be sure you don’t miss it. This ODI series has been a back and forth affair. In the first match, South Africa recorded an impressive 266/2, including a century (108) from opening batsmen Hashim Amia and a near-century (93) from Rassie van der Dussen. However, Pakistan refused to yield and half-centuries from Imam-ul-Haq and Mohammed Hafeez gave them a five wicket win with five balls remaining in the match. South Africa were able to rally in the second ODI, holding Pakistan to 203 all out. Another half-century (83) from van der Dussen helped the Springboks to a five wicket victory with eight overs remaining. South African bowler Andile Phehlukwayo shone in the second match, recording a 2.24 Economy, 4 wickets and 2 maiden overs.
South Africa took the third ODI to take a 2-1 lead in the five-game series. Despite an impressive 317/6 performance from Pakistan, including a century from Imam-ul-Haq, heavy rain interrupted play during South Africa’s turn at the crease. With the rain not abating, South Africa was awarded a thirteen run win via the DLS method. To add insult to injury for Pakistan, the ICC handed down a four-match ban to captain Sarfraz Ahmed after a stump mic caught him making a racist remark to Andile Phehlukwayo. Despite the blow of losing a match they had performed so well in, Pakistan bounced back and dominated South Africa in the fourth ODI. They held South Africa to 164 runs and needed only 31.3 to achieve an eight-wicket win. Imam-ul-Haq led by example, scoring 71 runs. Today’s final ODI will be a closely-contested one as Pakistan look for their first back to back wins against South Africa since 2013. Meanwhile, South Africa, who won the three-Test series prior to this run of ODIs, will look to give themselves a strong footing before the tour-ending T20 series that starts on Friday. Both teams will also be eager to put in the best performances they can before the World Cup starts later this year. The two sides will meet in that competition at Lord’s on June 23rd. Be sure you don’t miss today’s action, as it is sure to be an exciting day of ODI cricket.
Honourable mentions around the globe go to the Premier League, where Spurs host Watford at Wembley. Spurs are third, trying to keep pressure on league leaders Liverpool and Manchester City in second. However, they come into today’s match following a string of losses. They fell to Chelsea in the semi-finals of the Carabao Cup and were most recently upset in the FA Cup by Crystal Palace. Meanwhile, Watford are seventh in the Premier League and are in a position to do the league double over Spurs, having beaten them 2-1 in September. This is going to be an exciting match so be sure you don’t miss it. Elsewhere, in the NHL, the Pittsburgh Penguins host the Tampa Bay Lightning at the PPG Paints Arena. In snooker, the German Masters begins in Berlin. In WTA tennis, the Thailand Open continues at Hua Hin. In NCAA basketball, Butler hosts 10th ranked Marquette at the Hinkle Fieldhouse.
Whatever you’re watching, enjoy!
Photos by ICC Cricket
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