Kagiso Rabada came into the last over under severe pressure having been carted around for 45 runs in his first three overs and now being tasked to defend 14 runs in the last over.
However, the pace came out with flying colours from it. Chris Woakes almost hit another six on the first ball, albeit it was a mishit on a slower one from Kagiso Rabada, but was superbly caught by Anrich Nortje at the mid-wicket boundary.
Eoin Morgan was back on strike, but he didn’t time his pull either on another slower ball and was caught again at deep mid-wicket. With the game still alive, Chris Jordan too perished looking for a maximum and hit another slower, short delivery to long-off.
Kagiso Rabada had a beaming smile on his face – he almost couldn’t believe that he’d got a hat-trick after what had been a forgettable first three overs. This is not only Kagiso Rabada’s maiden T20I hat-trick, but this is the first-ever hat-trick in Men’s T20I for any South African!
Bitter-sweet end for us: Temba Bavuma
South Africa captain Temba Bavuma addressed this as a “Bitter-sweet” ending for his side as despite winnings 4 out of 5 matches, same as England and Australia, the Protea have to go back home owing to their inferior to the other two teams.
But, Bavuma and his side will take plenty of positives and experiences from their journey in the UAE in the past month.
“The win was important. Bitter-sweet end for us. We achieved what we wanted to – win the game but just couldn’t win it big enough. At the start of the tournament, that (net run rate) was never a factor for us, we just wanted to win games. It’s always tough to make up for that at the back end, especially against a team like England. The young guys will learn a lot from this. I think this is going to give us a lot of experience and confidence. It’ll give us a lot of knowledge on how to go about things forward,” Bavuma said at the post-match press conference.
England top the Group 1 followed by Australia. Pakistan are at the top of Group 2, and one of India, New Zealand, and Afghanistan will join them in the semis.