South Africa 195 for 4 (De Kock 59, De Villiers 49, Mehidy 2-31) beat Bangladesh 175 for 9 (Sarkar 47, Phehlukwayo 2-25) by 20 runs
Another match, another win for South Africa: nothing much has changed on this tour. The hosts took the first T20I in Bloemfontein by 20 runs, but for the first time in four weeks, Bangladesh put up a proper fight.
Quinton de Kock smacked a half-century, AB de Villiers, in one of his moods, hit eight boundaries in his first 16 balls and Farhaan Behardien produced a fine knock as finisher to take South Africa to a total of 195. Then, Dane Paterson, Andile Phehlukwayo, Beuran Hendricks and debutant Robbie Frylinck picked up two wickets each to keep Bangladesh down to 175 for 9 in 20 overs.
Mehidy Hasan and Shakib Al Hasan bowled effectively against a set of rampaging batsmen. Later, Soumya Sarkar and Mohammad Saifuddin did well to put pressure an inexperienced South African attack. It wasn't enough, but it was something worth talking about from the visitors.
After JP Duminy decided to bat, the home side banked on two strong partnerships to post a competitive total. A 79-run second wicket stand between de Villiers and de Kock gave them the foundation before the unbroken 62-run fifth wicket stand between David Miller and Behardien gave them the sparkling finish.
Bangladesh's bowlers started well, taking their earliest first wicket on tour when Mehidy removed Hashim Amla in the second over. De Villiers arrived at the crease at that point and saw de Kock hit three fours before getting down to business himself.
He started with two fours off Rubel Hossain in the fifth over that went for 14. He struck Shafiul Islam for four boundaries in the next over that went for 18. In the seventh over, de Villiers hammered Saifuddin for two more fours as South Africa got 44 runs in these three overs.
Over the next three overs though, Mehedi and Shakib gave away only 20 runs and that made a difference as de Villiers went for another of his big shots only to hole out to long-off. He finished with 49 off 27 balls.
A spell of 27 balls without a boundary was broken in the 12th over when the South African stand-in captain JP Duminy tonked a full toss over deep midwicket. It was the only bad ball in Mehidy's entire spell, which yielded 2 for 31.
Imrul Kayes completed a great catch at long-on to remove Duminy in the 13th over, which also included a marginal run-out call which went South Africa's way. De Kock, the batsman reprieved, fell lbw to Rubel Hossain in the 15th over, having made 59 off 44 balls. And though he wasn't too wasn't happy with the decision he didn't even try to review it.
Behardien and Miller came together with the score on 133 for 4 with five overs left. They only got five boundaries in that time, but by pinching twos at every opportunity, they were still able to ransack 62 runs.
Bangladesh took to the chase in earnest, Kayes smashing the first ball from Paterson for four over mid-off and Sarkar joining in with a massive six over mid-on.
They kept up with the required rate while the field restrictions were on - for the cost of Kayes' wicket - but their hopes of building on such a fine start were put to bed by Frylinck and Phehlukwayo. One made Shakib his maiden T20I wicket and the other trapped Sarkar lbs for 47.
Mushfiqur Rahim and Mahmudullah followed Sarkar to the pavilion, leaving Bangladesh at 101 for 5 in the 12th over. The contest was as good as done when Sabbir Rahman, the last specialist batsman, fell 15 balls later. Paterson added the exclamation point to that statement, taking two wickets in two balls, one of them off a scorching yorker, as Bangladesh kept unravelling.
It was against this backdrop that Saifuddin made a composed 39 off 27 balls. He hadn't allowed South Africa to get too many in the last over of their innings and he ensured they wouldn't bowl Bangladesh out, taking 15 runs off the last over of the match.