Australian T20 captain Aaron Finch said he felt “embarrassed” to be awarded the player of the series trophy against South Africa after Ashton Agar’s performances.
Australia's T20 World Cup preparations went from strength to strength after David Warner and Steve Smith enjoyed a triumphant return to Cape Town, piloting the tourists to a 2-1 series victory over South Africa.
Returning to the scene of their sandpaper nightmare, Warner (57 off 37 balls) and Smith (30no off 15) starred with the bat before Australia bowled out the lacklustre Proteas for 96 in response to their 5-193.
Finch had a good series scoring 111 runs at an average of 37.00.
But Agar became the first Australian to take a hat-trick since Brett Lee in international T20 and took eight wickets for an average of 8.50.
“He [Agar] was clearly man of the series, it is a bit embarrassing [to be named player of the series] when he has had the series that he has,” Finch said during the awards presentation.
“He was outstanding.”
Agar very nearly had his second hat-trick in three games after bowling Lungi Ngidi for a golden duck.
Smith, batting at No.5 in a retooled line-up, provided the fireworks when he smacked two sixes off the final over in a valuable late cameo.
He would have been out for six when he was clean-bowled by a Kagiso Rabada yorker, but the Proteas spearhead was called for a front-foot no ball.
Warner earlier combined with Finch (55) to give Australia a dream start, racing to 0-75 off the powerplay against the weak Proteas.
The tourists made the surprise move to send Matthew Wade and Mitch Marsh in at No.3 and No.4 respectively after their strong start.
Wade's ineffective series continued when he was dismissed for 10, while Marsh (19) successfully challenged an lbw dismissal but holed out in the deep soon after.
Ultimately it was the Proteas who were left facing more significant questions after a series in which they suffered losses of 107 and 97 runs.
"It's just another blowout the way I see it," de Kock said.
"It's not good enough doing it twice in one series. We're going to have to have a good look at ourselves and ask some honest questions."