South Africa captain Temba Bavuma scored a century as the Proteas defeated England by five wickets to take an unassailable 2-0 lead in their one-day series on Sunday.
Hosts South Africa won the toss and elected to bowl first, but after a slow start England accelerated to post a formidable 342-7 in their 50 overs, with Harry Brook and Moeen Ali scoring half centuries. Captain Joss Buttler finished unbeaten on 94.
The home side reached their target with five balls remaining for a record chase at the Mangaung Oval, smashing the previous best mark of 274 by South Africa against Australia in 2020.
They finished on 347-5. Only India have chased more runs to beat England in ODI cricket when they reached 356-7 in Pune in 2016.
The result is a boost for South Africa, who need a clean sweep of the series to stay on course for guaranteed qualification for the World Cup in India this year.
“It is very special. Playing against England is always a tough ask," said Bavuma. “Your disciplines are always being tested and it is a good opportunity for us to test our way of playing.
“Chasing 340 like that will give us a lot of confidence. It was a good day and a good outing for us.
“It was very enjoyable. These wickets are actually quite nice and suit the way we want to play. I've reminded myself how to get to a hundred too and I hope I can build on it.
“David [Miller] and Marco [Jansen] were there so it wasn't that tense. Marco struggled to get it away but the guys were pretty calm. It would have been something miraculous for us to lose that game.”
The visitors’ total on Sunday was boosted by a magnificent unbeaten 94 in 82 balls from Buttler and an excellent 80 from 75 deliveries from Brook, who made a duck on his ODI debut in the opening match of the series.
Moeen chipped in with a fluent 51 from 45 balls as England smashed 181 from the last 20 overs of their innings.
South Africa were always up with the rate in their reply, which was anchored by Bavuma, who scored a timely third ODI century having come in for recent criticism following poor white ball form.
Miller took the team home with a masterful 58 from 37 balls and Aiden Markram chipped in with a 49 at better than a run a ball.
“South Africa bowled really well early on, so to come back and post 340 was a fantastic effort from the guys,” said Buttler. “It was a terrific game and a great chase.
“I thought it was a good score at the halfway stage, and having seen the game the other night, the wicket got tougher, but South Africa chased it really well.
“Harry Brook has been performing in Test cricket and T20 and we know what a talent he is and what a career he will have.”