Steyn, Faf beat Aussies to claim trophy

Australia

South Africa batsman Faf du Plessis fell four runs short of becoming the first batsman to score four centuries in an ODI series, but it was immaterial as the Proteas beat Australia by six wickets to claim the tri-series trophy.

South Africa batsman Faf du Plessis fell four runs short of becoming the first batsman to score four centuries in an ODI series, but it was immaterial as the Proteas beat Australia by six wickets to claim the tri-series trophy.

Du Plessis fell on 96 with the scores tied on 217, trying to hit a boundary to reach his milestone, but didn't seem to upset about it as AB de Villiers ended the game a ball later, ending on 57 not out himself.

The Proteas won the toss and opted to bowl on a dry, slow track, and that decision proved correct as Dale Steyn did the job with the ball. The paceman took four wickets as the ball began to reverse swing early in the knock already.

Aussie opener Aaron Finch resisted manfully to make an uncharacteristically slow half century, while wickets tumbled at the other end. Phil Hughes, Steve Smith and George Bailey all fell for less than 20.

Steyn was on a hat-trick at one stage, having bowled Finch for 52, and then trapping Glenn Maxwell LBW, but Brad Haddin denied him the chance to become only the second Protea to take an ODI hat-trick.

Steyn had the last laugh though, getting rid of Haddin six runs later. Wayne Parnell was also in the wickets, bagging Smith and Mitchell Marsh, while Morne Morkel took two wickets as well.

The Aussies only managed to score more than 200 thanks to James Faulkner, in the side for an injured Kane Richardson. He struck 39 at the death, while Mitchell Starc made 29 not out off 46 balls.

The total was never going to be enough though, not with Du Plessis is such sublime form, and AB de Villiers his able partner. Added to this, Hashim Amla added a half ton of his own at the top of the order.

Quinton de Kock and Parnell, astonishingly sent in ahead of De Villiers, were the two batsmen who failed to capitalise on some poor Aussie bowling, both out for single figures, but the seniors were unbothered.

Du Plessis never looked like getting out and the assumption was that he'd get a fourth ton in five games. Once the scores were tied, De Villiers at the other end turned down the winning run to give his mate the chance for a four, but he top-edged it to mid on and the skipper had to wrap things up.

Steyn was awarded man of the match for his four wickets, while Du Plessis was the obvious man of the tournament, having scored more than 200 runs more than the next best batsman.

South Africa: Q de Kock, H Amla, F du Plessis, AB de Villiers, JP Duminy, D Miller, W Parnell, D Steyn, M Morkel, A Phangiso, Imran Tahir

Australia: A Finch, P Hughes, S Smith, G Maxwell, G Bailey, M Marsh, B Haddin, J Faulkner, M Johnson, M Starc, N Lyon

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