Centurion: South Africa scripted a record run-chase in T20 Internationals after they chased down 259 runs against West Indies in the 2nd T20I to level the series 1-1 at SuperSport Park, here on Sunday.
Johnson Charles had brought fireworks for the West Indies by striking a 39-ball century in the first innings. But Quinton De Kock smashed his maiden T20I century in the chase for South Africa in a blistering 152-run opening partnership in little more than 10 overs to set the base for South Africa completing the highest ever successful run chase in T20Is with seven balls to spare.
Racking up 102 in the first six overs in the run-chase, the highest score by any team in the Powerplay in T20Is, de Kock and Reeza Hendricks kickstarted South Africa’s innings in style.
The opening stand of 152 came off just 10.5 overs as South Africa suddenly turned into favourites to win the game. De Kock then fell for 100 off 44 balls, hitting nine fours and eight sixes at a strike-rate of 227.27.
While the visitors made a comeback of sorts by dismissing Rilee Rossouw, Hendricks and David Miller in fairly quick succession, skipper Aiden Markram continued the carnage to lead his side to a memorable win, remaining unbeaten on 38 off just 21 balls as a whopping 517 runs were aggregated from the match.
With this, South Africa now hold the record for the highest successful run-chase in both ODIs and T20Is.
The previous record for the highest successful run-chase in T20Is was held by Bulgaria against Serbia in 2022, when the former chased down 243 in 19.4 overs.
Earlier, Charles broke the record of Chris Gayle when he slammed the fastest T20I hundred by a West Indies batter in men’s T20Is in the first innings. Coming in early, Charles hit 10 fours and 11 sixes in his innings at a strike-rate of 256.52. He was eventually cleaned up at 118 by a Marco Jansen yorker.
Charles blasted the South Africa attack all around the park on the way to his hundred, which he reached in just 39 balls. This was a maiden T20I hundred for the 34-year-old Charles, who got 106 runs off boundaries in his ferocious knock.
His hundred is the second joint-fastest in the format and the fastest by a West Indian in T20Is, going past the 47-ball hundred by Gayle coming against England in the 2016 Men’s T20 World Cup at the Wankhede Stadium in Mumbai.
The record for fastest T20I hundred is shared by South Africa’s David Miller, India captain Rohit Sharma and Czech Republic’s Sudesh Wickramasekara. Kyle Mayers was the second highest scorer for the West Indies with 51 runs off 27 balls.
Overall, the 46-ball carnage from his bat helped West Indies to reach 258/5 in 20 overs, their highest total in the format. The score surpassed the previous-best score of 245/6 which came against India at Lauderhill, USA, in 2016.
The series decider will be held on Tuesday at the Wanderers in Johannesburg.
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