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Mohammad Hafeez became the first batsman given out for obstructing the field under new rules on Thursday before Pakistan defeated South Africa by three wickets to level their one-day series 2-2. The opener changed his running line while attempting a second run and was struck by a throw from AB de Villiers aimed at the non-striker’s end.
He was given out by third umpire Billy Bowden, becoming the first player to fall victim to the new International Cricket Council rule that prohibits batsman from intentionally changing their running line to intercept the ball.
Hafeez is only the sixth player ever in international cricket to be given out for obstructing the field. Pakistan, chasing 235 to win at Kingsmead, stuttered to 33-3 before a 153-run stand between captain Misbah-ul-Haq (80) and opener Imran Farhat (93) laid the platform for victory. “It was a much-needed victory for us, everybody put in 100 percent. It was a combined effort. You dream of a start like we got with the ball, all of the bowlers bowled well,” Misbah said.