South Africa registered an impressive 142-run win over Australia in the second one-day international at the Wanderers Stadium on Sunday courtesy a breathtaking century by Proteas skipper Faf du Plessis.
The South African captain overcame a thumb injury to hit a match winning knock of 111 runs that took away the game from the Aussies.
Du Plessis made 111 as South Africa piled up 361 for six wickets after being sent in to bat. Australia made a bad start and were bowled out for 219 in reply, leaving them 2-0 down in a five-match series.
Du Plessis praised his team for what he described as "almost a perfect batting and bowling performance. The batsmen laid the basics well and the bowlers were exceptional". He singled out opening bowlers Dale Steyn and Kagiso Rabada, who both claimed an early wicket and put Australia's batting under immediate pressure.
Australian captain Steve Smith said he felt South Africa's total was only 20 or 30 runs above par, given the history of the Wanderers pitch. "But if you are chasing that sort of target you need a good start and you need things to go your way. Every game's a must-win for us now," Smith said.
Du Plessis was struck on the left thumb by a throw from Aaron Finch as he raced through for a quick single to score his first run. He immediately went down clutching the thumb and required lengthy treatment on the field before resuming his innings. The injury did not stop him playing some powerful drives as he went to his half-century off 42 balls. He reached his sixth one-day international century off 84 deliveries with 13 fours.
He was eventually caught on the boundary after facing 93 balls, without adding to his boundary tally. "Luckily I don't use that thumb on my bat," he said. On a field renowned for high scoring, a run riot seemed in prospect when Quinton de Kock and Rilee Rossouw made 41 runs off the first five overs, bowled by international newcomers Chris Tremain and Joe Mennie.