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HomeCricketAustralia seals T20 series whitewash against South Africa

Australia seals T20 series whitewash against South Africa

DURBAN: Donovan Ferreira top scored with a blistering debut 48 but it was not enough as an improved Proteas went down by five wickets to Australia in the third and final KFC T20 International (T20I) at Hollywoodbets Kingsmead Stadium in Durban on Sunday.

The result ensured the tourists ran out 3-0 winners after bigger wins in the first two games.

However, they were made to work much harder in match three thanks in part to 25-year-old all-rounder Ferreira, who plundered five sixes and one four in a rollicking 21-ball innings that helped South Africa post 190 for eight after winning the toss and batting.

The Australian batters were ruthless though in reply, chasing down the target with 13 balls to spare after a pulsating 91 (48 balls, 8 fours, 6 sixes) by Travis Head.

They were helped on their way by some poor fielding with the home side dropping several catches as they fell to defeat. Both teams now have a few days to regroup, before commencing a five-match Betway One-Day International Series on Thursday.

The hosts, however, can take several positives out of the final encounter, not least Ferreira’s performance.

At the start of the game, Temba Bavuma (0) and another debutant Matthew Breetzke (5) were out cheaply, with captain Aiden Markram (41) and Reeza Hendricks (42) rebuilding through a 58-run third-wicket stand.

The skipper impressed before tamely falling, but the upward momentum was maintained through opener Hendricks until he was dismissed in the 13th over with the score on 116.

It was then a struggle for the Proteas, who lost a clutter of wickets including that of one of the other set men in Tristan Stubbs (25) and suddenly looking in huge trouble on 122 for six. Sean Abbott (4/31) was doing all the damage at that stage.

Gerald Coetzee (13) helped Ferreira add 52 for the seventh wicket and the South Africans eventually recovered to set 191.

The tourists lost Matthew Short for a first-ball duck thanks to arguably the Proteas’ best bowler of the series, Markram, but it was ominous from thereon.

Four dropped catches did not aid their cause as Head put on 43 with Mitchell Marsh (15) and then added 85 in seven overs with Josh Inglis (42).

Another blistering stand of 58 between Marcus Stoinis (37*) and Head took them the away side to the brink and even though two late wickets fell, it came too late to threaten a twist – the chase completed in 17.5 overs.

Bjorn Fortuin and Coetzee both ended with two for 36, with Markram claiming one for 37.

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