Pakistani bowlers restrict South Africa to 197

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FAISALABAD, Oct 23 (Reuters) Shahid Afridi and Rao Iftikhar spearheaded a potent bowling display by Pakistan as the hosts dismissed South Africa for just 197 in the third one-day international at Iqbal stadium today.

Sharing six wickets between them, all rounder Afridi (3-37) and paceman Iftikhar (3-33) excelled on a sluggish pitch which also offered encouragement to the spin bowlers.

With the five-match series tied at 1-1, South Africa's decision to bat backfired due to a combination of disciplined bowling and alert fielding.

Captain Graeme Smith top scored for the tourists with 48 from 68 balls and Justin Kemp contributed 42. Their fourth-wicket partnership of 45 from 75 balls was the best of a disappointing innings.

South Africa were unable to take advantage of the final 10 overs after they lost their final six wickets for just 48 runs to be dismissed with four balls remaining.

Afridi and Iftikhar took two wickets apiece in the closing overs as the visiting batsmen tried to accelerate the scoring rate after they had reached 149-4 from 40 overs.

Earlier, Smith and Herschelle Gibbs (19) put on a brisk 43 to give South Africa a solid foundation before pacer Umar Gul had the latter caught behind in the ninth over.

Jacques Kallis (13), looking out of sorts after his impressive 421 runs in the two-test series, fell to a brilliant low catch by Misbah-ul-Haq at cover to give Afridi his first wicket.

The in-form AB de Villiers looked fluent in his 17 from 28 balls before he was taken by a sharp catch at mid-wicket by Afridi off Iftikhar, leaving South Africa on 77-3 from 20 overs.

Smith was eventually run out in the 33rd over by his counterpart Shoaib Malik after hitting four boundaries, while Kemp fell at the end of the 41st over, bowled by Afridi after blasting two big sixes.

Mark Boucher (17), Shaun Pollock (1) and Albie Morkel (12) were all out caught while attempting to slog boundaries.

REUTERS TB BD1622

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