And just like that, the West Indies that had looked so powerful in the opening T20I defeat was brought down to Earth in the second T20I. The target for Sunday night’s match was just six more than the 160 the Windies had chased down at a canter a night earlier.
But that marginally higher target proved too difficult to track for the mercurial hosts, who suffered an inexplicable middle-order collapse that saw the likes of Chris Gayle, Nicholas Pooran, Kieron Pollard and Andre Russel contribute just 23 runs between themselves.
That was the sequence where the run chase went awry as the Windies were reminded that firepower and talent do not always mean that they’d win every match.
For South Africa, this match provided assurance that even with much less talent than their hosts, they can find ways to keep the series competitive and might even nick it, if they play wisely.
Their top-order clicked in the win but again their middle to lower-order batsmen failed to capitalize on the ground work provided and all they could manage was a run-a-ball production.
The 166-run target would have had them feeling uneasy but still proved enough, thanks to Kagiso Rabada (3-37) and George Linde (2-19) – the latter of whom was named the player of the match.
Neither team needs to make any major changes just yet as it is a long five-match series and even the options that are failing need to be given at least one more opportunity.