Having battled hard to reach stumps on day one 42 not out, helping Pakistan recover from 22-3 in the process, Fawad added just three more runs before being undone by a piece of magic. After dropping the ball into the off-side, Fawad immediately set off for a quick single, only for Bavuma to calculate the angles in an instant, swoop in, and hurl down the stumps in one fluid motion.
On air, Mike Haysman immediately referenced another piece of Bavuma brilliance. “Bavuma has done it again,” said the commentator. “He had an outstanding run out to get rid of David Warner in Perth and I reckon he’s done it again. The important thing about that – yes the direct hit was sensational – but the time he took to release the ball was ridiculous.”
That 2016 effort was arguably more spectacular, with Bavuma horizontal to the ground as he released the ball. It was calculated that the ball spent a mere 0.264 seconds in his hand before releasing on that occasion.
It was also vital to South Africa’s cause. The Proteas had made just 242 in their first innings, and seen Australia march to 158-0 in reply, and though Dale Steyn broke through, he injured his shoulder soon after and left the field for the rest of the match. Still, South Africa rallied to keep the lead to just two runs, before building a big third innings total.
Bavuma chipped in with the wicket of Josh Hazlewood to help South Africa’s defence, but it was his run out of Warner, fresh off 97 in the first innings, which proved pivotal.
The on-air commentators at the time initially assumed Warner, one of the quickest between the wickets in international cricket, must have made it home safe. But replays showed he was just short.
“The pick-up and throw was quick, this is sensational fielding from Bavuma,” said Shane Warne. “Creating something from nothing.”
Watch the magical moment below.
Three years ago this week, Temba Bavuma defied physics and produced one of the best run outs you're ever likely to see! pic.twitter.com/nufsVDTG4G
— cricket.com.au (@cricketcomau) November 7, 2019