Centurion [South Africa], April 17 (ANI): Pakistan skipper Babar Azam has lauded the team effort after the T20I series win against South Africa.
Faheem Ashraf and Hasan Ali picked three wickets each before Fakhar Zaman's fifty and Mohammad Nawaz's late cameo helped Pakistan register a thrilling win over South Africa in the fourth and final T20I on Friday.
Nawaz finished the game with a six as Pakistan clinched the final T20I with just a ball to spare, and took the series 3-1.
"I'm very happy with how the team performed. It was a complete team effort rather than a one-man show. The way we started the one-day series was testament to that. The way Fakhar [Zaman] performed stood out obviously, but I think we should pay credit to the bowlers, too," Babar said after the game.
"This might have been a batsman-friendly series, but overall, the bowlers did a decent job. The only thing missing was early wickets up top, but the way we kept coming back was outstanding, and you have to credit the bowlers for that. There are some mistakes that we need to rectify, but day by day when you keep working on your flaws, your results invariably improve," he added.
Pakistan won the toss and asked South Africa to bat. The home side again made a promising start by reaching 109 for two thanks to Rassie van der Dussen's dashing 52 runs off 36 balls. However, they then collapsed to 144 all out in 19.3 overs with Faheem grabbing three for 17.
Fakhar was then outstanding in the reply and plundered 60 off 34 balls (5 fours, 4 sixes) to help his side reach 92/1 at one stage. The home side did fight back through Sisanda Magala (2/33), Tabraiz Shamsi (1/21), and Andile Phehlukwayo (1/11) but Mohammad Nawaz's unbeaten 25 sealed victory with a delivery to spare.
"We were disappointed when so many set batsmen got out, which put pressure on the middle order. Lots of wickets fell, and we just needed some partnerships, which unfortunately didn't happen. Throughout, the match went well, the bowlers were in control, and we kept them under control in the powerplay and restricted them at the end to just 144," Babar said.
The visiting skipper said that the side will look to give a final touch to their preparations for the T20 World Cup scheduled later this year in India.
"We'll get a lot of confidence. When you win a series against South Africa in South Africa, that gives you a boost. We'll have to learn where we made mistakes and what we need to work on. We need to give everyone confidence. Not everyone performs, but what we need to do is capitalise on form. Now we have to go to Zimbabwe and then the [T20] World Cup, so the preparation is in full swing. We're looking to get everything finalised by the World Cup," Azam said. (ANI)