Henry Davids hit his second successive half-century and Aaron Phangiso took three wickets as South Africa beat New Zealand by 33 runs in the series-deciding third and final Twenty20 international at St George’s Park on Wednesday.
Davids struck 68 in a South African total of 179 for six and Phangiso dismissed New Zealand’s big guns, Martin Guptill and Brendon McCullum in successive overs, effectively ending the touring team's challenge. New Zealand finished with 146 for nine.
The slightly-built Davids, who made his debut in the first match of the series, hit seven fours and two sixes in a 51-ball innings. A third wicket stand of 89 off 61 balls with Justin Ontong (48) enabled South Africa to overcome a poor start.
Left-arm opening bowler Mitchell McClenaghan was again the pick of the New Zealand bowlers, taking two for 24 off four overs.
Doug Bracewell also took two wickets, striking with the last two balls of the innings as David Miller (28) and Farhaan Behardien perished in going for big shots after a fifth wicket stand of 44 off 23 balls.
Corey Anderson held four catches, three of them in the deep.
New Zealand lost Rob Nicol in the first over but briefly entertained hopes of victory as Guptill (24) and McCullum (25), the team’s leading batsmen, put on 47 off 37 balls for the second wicket.