Nida Dar scored a crucial 32 in the chase Getty

Iram Javed compiled a 45-ball 55 while Aliya Riaz and Nida Dar chipped in with useful scores as Pakistan overcame South Africa in a thriller by four wickets in the third T20I in Pietermaritzburg to take a 2-1 lead in the five-match series. The visitors hunted down a target of 138 - their highest successful score chased - with just two balls to spare.

In pursuit of a competitive target, Pakistan suffered an early collapse, finding themselves precariously placed at 3 for 3. Dar and Javed, however, steadied the innings with a stand of 77. Even after Barbara Daniels castled Dar, Javed and Riaz stitched a partnership of 44 to take the tourists closer to a stunning victory.

With two overs to go, Pakistan needed another 13 more runs. Kainat Imtiaz, the pacer, kept the visitors in front with a boundary in the penultimate over. There was another twist in the tale when Nadine de Klerk dislodged Javed. However, Sana Mir cracked a boundary and picked up a double to seal the game.

Earlier, Tazmin Brits (70*) composed her highest T20I score to provide the platform for a good score. de Klerk (36) and Sune Luus (28) also made decent contributions. Riaz and Rameen Shamim took a scalp each for Pakistan.

The fourth game of the T20I series will be played in Benoni on May 22.

Brief scores: South Africa Women 138/3 in 20 overs (Tazmin Brits 70*; Rameen Shamim 1-20) lost to Pakistan Women 139/6 in 19.4 overs (Iram Javed 55; Moseline Daniels 3-13) by four wickets.