A devastating opening spell by Sana Mir helped Pakistan Women skittle South Africa Women to their second lowest ODI total of 63 and eventually secure an eight-wicket win in their first ODI of the ICC Women’s Championship in Potchefstroom on Monday.
Mir’s four-for, two of which came on back-to-back deliveries in the second over, wrecked the Proteas top order. Coupled with Fatima Sana’s dismissal of Lizelle Lee in the opening over, Mir’s demolition job never allowed Africans to recover.
For the hosts, only Mignon du Preez () and Chloe Tryon (21) could reach double figures as Nashra Sandhu and Nida Dar cleaned up the rest of the line-up with two wickets a piece.
The start to Pakistan Women’s innings was exactly as their South African counterparts’ as they lost their opening innings on the third ball of the opening over with just four runs on the board.
However, one-down batter Javeria Khan made sure that that setback did not derail the run chase. Her unbeaten 34-run knock was enough for Pakistan to even absorb the loss of Sidra Ameen (10).
Khan and Bismah Maroof (12*) made sure the team got over the line and register their first-ever victory in South Africa.
Mir was deservedly named the player of the match but she insisted that the result was the product of “a team effort for which everyone tried their hardest”.
“Nahida was exceptional in the slips. Nashra, myself … the young Fatima Sana gave us a quick breakthrough. Nida bowled brilliantly, and Aalia [too] bowled well. Then our batters did the job. Bismah and Javeria finished it off.”
Now that they have the winning formula, Mir said the team “would like to stick to it”. She credited coach Mark Coles and his support staff for devising the team plan and hoped that “the team executes the plans and repeats the performance in future matches as well”. Despite a dominant win, Mir wasn’t entirely satisfied, saying that the team “gave away a few runs in the field and lost two wickets”, and could use some improvement in those areas.