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Hodge clinches a thriller for Aussies

Brad Hodge in action, in Durban, on Wednesday

Durban: Brad Hodge hit two sixes in the last over as Australia clinched a five-wicket win in a helter-skelter second Twenty20 International against South Africa at Kingsmead.

In a match reduced to seven overs a side after heavy rain, Australia needed 15 in the last over to chase down South Africa’s 80 for one. Thanks to Hodge, they achieved it with two balls to spare.

Only two runs came off Wayne Parnell’s first two balls but Hodge launched the third and fourth deliveries over midwicket for six before Parnell bowled a wide to gift Australia the winning runs. Hodge’s innings of 21 not out off eight balls won him the Man of the Match award.

Hodge’s last-gasp effort trumped hard-hitting innings of 41 not out by South Africa’s Quinton de Kock and 40 by Australia’s David Warner.

South Africa made a slow start after being sent in on an under-prepared pitch which offered enough seam movement to make batting tricky. Hashim Amla made only four off nine balls and the score limped to 11 for one after three overs.