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Bairstow blitz flattens South Africa despite Faf fifty

Bairstow blitz flattens South Africa despite Faf fifty”

Sam bagged his T20I-best figures 3-28 from his four overs, including the scalp of South Africa top-scorer Faf du Plessis (58 from 40 balls), but Tom was smashed for his most expensive figures in the format of 1-55.

Sam Curran's initial wicket - that of Temba Bavuma caught behind on the scoop for five in the first over - meant an early introduction for Du Plessis and the 36-year-old went on to star in South Africa's 179-6.

The first T20I will feature the likes of Quinton de Kock, Faf du Plessis, Kagiso Rabada and Lungi Ngidi, all of whom have featured for the respective sides in IPL 2020. But a crucial partnership of 85 runs between Bairstow and Ben Stokes (37) for the fourth wicket completely changed the momentum of the game. England needed 51 runs from 24 balls before this over, but after this, 23 runs were needed from 18 balls. Linde was straight back out to open the bowling and with just the second delivery of his T20I career he had Jason Roy caught behind for a duck, leaving England at 1/1 from the first over. With the score at 34-3 when Bairstow and Stokes came together, the pair repaired the innings as they blasted the ball to all parts to pile the pressure back on the home bowling attack. Later in the final over, Bairstow slammed six off Ngidi's second ball and seal the deal for England.

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Bairstow hit nine fours and four sixes and was England's match-winner after being shifted from opener to No 4 to give Jos Buttler a chance at the top of the order.

George Linde was the pick of the bowler for the Proteas as he picked two wickets for just 20 runs in his quota of 4 overs. Jonny's had an unbelievably good day out on a wicket that was a little bit two-paced. After Duplesey's dismissal, South Africa's run-off also came to a halt and the team could score 179 runs in 20 overs. Being three down early poses challenges, Jonny and Ben set up the chase nicely.

After one of the best IPL seasons, it was finally time for some global T20 cricket. It's beginning of the tour, nice to start with a win. Hopefully, we'll improve and progress in the next few games. "We need to be doing the right things", Morgan said in the post-match presentation.



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