Faf du Plessis and Reeza Hendricks were plundering the Pakistan bowlers in a second-wicket stand of 131 off 74 balls. Photo: Phando Jikelo/African News Agency/ANA

CAPE  TOWN – Faf du Plessis and Reeza Hendricks shared a record partnership before Pakistan fought back in the first Twenty20 international against South Africa at Newlands on Friday.

South Africa made 192/6 after being sent in.

It was the highest total in a T20 international at Newlands, but it seemed likely to be much higher when Du Plessis and Hendricks were plundering the bowlers in a second-wicket stand of 131 off 74 balls.

Du Plessis made 78 off 45 balls and Hendricks hit 74 off 41 deliveries.

But Du Plessis’ dismissal in the 16th over sparked a mini-collapse, and the Proteas lost five wickets while scoring only 35 runs in the last 28 balls of the innings.

Left-arm fast bowler Usman Shinwari dismissed Du Plessis and Rassie van der Dussen in the same over, and finished with 3/31.

Hendricks, who hit eight fours and two sixes, said South Africa had been on track to score around 220. “We lost our way a bit,” he said.

Du Plessis was in imperious form, striking six fours and four sixes before driving Shinwari to Pakistan captain Shoaib Malik at mid-off.

Van der Dussen was caught behind without scoring by a diving wicket-keeper Mohammad Rizwan two balls later.

South Africa suffered a blow before the match when wicket-keeper batsman Quinton de Kock was ruled out of the series because of a groin injury. He was replaced in the squad by the uncapped Janneman Malan.

AFP