CHRIS MORRIS led a superb bowling performance to enable the Standard Bank Proteas to secure a three-run series-levelling victory over England in the second T20 International at Taunton on Friday.
The two teams now go to a series deciding match at Cardiff on Sunday.
The Proteas, losing the toss and having to bat first, looked a few runs short when they were restricted to 174/8 in their 20 overs. Their total was set up by Jon-Jon Smuts (45 off 35 balls, 4 fours and 3 sixes) and AB de Villiers (46 off 20 balls, 4 fours and 3 sixes) but they were unable to kick on when De Villiers was dismissed going into the final 5 overs.
Tom Curran was the pick of the England attack, taking 3/33 on debut.
But they had the man for the moment in Morris (2/18 in 4 overs with 16 dot balls) and he received great support from two inexperienced youngsters, Dane Paterson and Andile Phehlukwayo.
The pair had to bowl the last four overs when England needed 40 runs with seven wickets still in hand and they rose to the occasion.
Phehlukwayo had to defend 12 runs (11 to prevent a super over) and he did a superb job, only going for 8 runs. It is not the first time that he has put his hand up in his young career and he is certainly one for the big occasion. He finished with 1/32 and Paterson with 1/34. The pair have only played 9 T20 Internationals between them and it said wonders for their composure under pressure.
The changes made to the South African bowling attack certainly made a difference with Morris, Paterson and Morne Morkel all being brought into the side.
England’s runs chase was set up by Jason Roy (67 off 45 balls, 9 fours and a six) and Jonny Bairstow (47 off 37 balls, 8 fours and a six) who shared a second wicket partnership of 110 in 11.4 overs.
Morris was named Man of the Match.