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Tahir claims ODI hat trick

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Magical spell against Zimbabwe

Imran Tahir took 6/24 against Zimbabwe. Photo: John Davidson/www.photosport.nz

PROTEAS leg-spinner Imran Tahir claimed a hat trick in a magical spell against Zimbabwe on Wednesday.

The 39-year-old Tahir, who had been asked about retirement before the match, showed that there is still a lot of energy within him as he rattled the visitors with his mix of googlies and leg-spinners.

Tahir, who ended the game with 6/24 in six overs – his second-best analysis in ODI cricket, behind the 7/45 against the West Indies – as the Proteas cruised to a 120-run victory to claim the three-match series 2-0.

The final ODI will be played at Boland Park in Paarl on Saturday.

Tahir’s three balls for the hat trick saw him dismiss Sean Williams for nine with a stumping by Heinrich Klaasen with the last delivery of the 18th over.

Then in the 20th over, he trapped PJ Moor lbw for five, and produced a beautiful googly to bowl Brandon Mavuta through the gate.

Tahir went on his usual excitable run across the field to celebrate the fourth ODI hat trick by a South African, following Charl Langeveldt, JP Duminy and Kagiso Rabada, and the 45th player in world cricket.