Imran Tahir took a hat-trick and six wickets as South Africa thrashed Zimbabwe by 120 runs in the second ODI at the Mangaung Oval in Bloemfontein on Wednesday.
The 39-year-old became the fourth South African to take a hat-trick after Charl Langeveldt (2005), JP Duminy (2015) and Kagiso Rabada (2015) in One-Day Internationals.
His 6/24 helped South Africa dismiss Zimbabwe for a meagre 78 runs to bring up the 120-run victory after the Proteas were dismissed for 198, having opted to bat first.
Zimbabwe had started well bundling out South Africa for just 198 runs in 47.3 overs with comeback man Dale Steyn, who registered his first ODI international half-century scoring the highest with a well-made 60, while opener Aiden Markram (35) made the second-highest score as South Africa continued to lose wickets at regular intervals.
Tendai Chatara was the main wicket-taker for Zimbabwe with three wickets for 42 runs in nine overs, while Kyle Jarvis (26/2), Donald Tiripano (37/2), Brandon Mavuta (48/2) took two wickets each to bundle South Africa for less than 200 runs. Sean Williams also chipped in with a wicket.
In reply, the visitors were off to a worst possible start as Steyn marked an all-around performance on his return to ODI cricket. The 35-year-old dismissed opener Solomon Mire and first-down batsman Craig Ervine for single-digit scores to giving away just 19 runs in his 6-over spell. Lungi Ngidi then trapped Zimbabwe skipper Hamilton Masakadza (27) in front of the wicket – although replays showed the ball was traveling down leg – before Tahir weaved his magic in and around the middle order.
He had already sent Brendon Taylor packing before Ngidi struck. Then the leggie has caught Sean Williams short of crease in the final ball of the 18th over, before returning an over later to catch Peter Moor plumb in-front of his wicket and then clean bowled Mavuta in his first two balls, to complete what was his first hat-trick in South African colours.
Tahir made great use of the googly and his straight ball but the hat-trick was not the end and the veteran will soon return to finish Zimbabwe’s innings in just 24 overs for a paltry 78 runs on board.
Brief Scores: South Africa 198 (Dale Steyn 60, Aiden Markram 35; Tendai Chatara 3-42) beat Zimbabwe 78 (Hamilton Masakadza 27; Donald Tiripano 12; Imran Tahir 6-24) by 120 runs.
Image Source: NDTV Sports