The second ODI may have seen South Africa win against Pakistan, but it was Fakhar Zaman who won the hearts of the fans. The Pakistan opener played a heroic 193-run knock off 155 balls to keep the visitors' hopes alive in clinching the series. And while the Men in Green lost the match, fans witnessed a world-class batting display from Zaman against Proteas on their own patch. When the second innings started, Pakistan fans very well knew the batting effort it would take to chase the target. But, the batting line-up soon started crumbling with no batsman able to score more than 31 runs.
However, the period of despair witnessed a rise of new star in Fakhar Zaman, who carried Pakistan till the end. The 30-year-old may have missed the double century, but broke several records during his glorious innings. However, not all things end well, and fans got to witness the same during Zaman's dismissal.
Fakhar Zaman's controversial dismissal
The opener returned to pavilion after getting run-out, but what transpired during the dismissal angered many cricket enthusiasts. While Quinton de Kock did not dismiss the batsman, the style of execution angered fans as the South Africa wicketkeeper cheekily bamboozled Fakhar with a ‘fake fielding’ effort. De Kock apparently pointed at the non-strikers’ end to distract and trick Fakhar.
As a result, Fakhar slowed down his pace and was found short of his crease when the direct hit from Aiden Markram knocked out the stumps. Questioning de Kock's sportsman spirit, a fan wrote, "What a poor display of sportsmanship by de Kock to get out."
Here is a video of the incident -
While the sportsman spirit may be arguable here, that does not degrade the contribution of the batsman. On his way to 193, Fakhar Zaman broke the record of most runs scored by a batsman while chasing. Today's 193 run knock against South Africa is closely followed by Shane Watson's 185* against Bangladesh and MS Dhoni's 183* against Sri Lanka.
Fakhar Zaman downplays the debate
The 30-year old opener downplayed the fake-fielding debate on his dismissal. He said, "It was my fault, I should've kept my eyes on the ball, I was looking at Haris Rauf." Pakistan today may have lost the game, but also got a reason to celebrate as Fakhar Zaman's innings will definitely be remembered for a long time.