Home Sports Indian cricket team created history, beating South Africa by 73 runs in the fifth One-day International 

Indian cricket team created history, beating South Africa by 73 runs in the fifth One-day International 

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Indian cricket team created history, beating South Africa by 73 runs in the fifth One-day International Rohit Sharma, wrist spinners help

Indian cricket team created history, beating South Africa by 73 runs in the fifth One-day International The visitors defeated the Proteas by 73 runs in the fifth one-day international at the St George’s Park in Port Elizabeth on Tuesday, to take a 4-1 lead in the six-match series.

As it happened India bowlers led by Kuldeep Yadav (4/57) and Hardik Pandya (2/30) bowled South Africa out for 201 in 42.2 overs, registering a comprehensive victory, after Rohit Sharma scored a hundred to help India set a challenging 275-run target. South Africa lost their last four wickets for five runs to the spin duo as India claimed a historic maiden series win.Yuzvendra Chahal (2/43) also took two wickets for India, while Jasprit Bumrah (1/22) chipped in with a wicket. Hashim Amla top-scored for the hosts with 71 off 92 balls.

After a good start in their chase, South Africa lost three wickets in quick succession – AB de Villiers, JP Duminy and Aiden Markram. Markram was in good nick and scored 32 off 32 balls which included a six and four boundaries. The Proteas skipper also put on 52 runs for the opening wicket with Amla, before giving a simple catch to his counterpart Virat Kohli at mid-off off Bumrah in the tenth over.

Seven balls later, Pandya dismissed Duminy in his first over, before landing the big wicket of de Villiers in the second. South Africa were reduced to 65/3 in 12.5 overs from 52/0 in 9.3. Amla and David Miller then resurrected the South African run chase by adding 62 for the fourth wicket. Miller (36 off 51 balls), while trying to increase the tempo, was clean bowled by Chahal in the 27th over.

But unlike at Wanderers, South African batsmen found it tough to negotiate India’s wrist spinners – Yadav and Chahal. The spin duo gave away 100 runs in their 19.2 overs and took six wickets and along with Pandya, they squeezed the runs in the middle overs.

In the one end, Amla continued to keep South Africa in the hunt and scored his 35th ODI fifty off 72 balls, hitting three fours. Amla added 39 for the fifth wicket with Heinrich Klaasen, but his long vigil ended in an unfortunate way  But Pandya, who had been dismissed for a golden duck, added to his exploits of being a sublime fielder with a superb throw from mid-off that rattled the stumps at non-striker’s end. With a tough decision to make, the third umpire flashed OUT on the gigantic screen to create a hush inside the stadium  it ended South Africa’s hopes for a comeback in the match.

Earlier, after a series of dismal performances, scoring just 40 runs in first four ODIs,Opener Rohit Sharma (115 off 126 balls, finally came good in this series as he scored his 17th century, his first in South Africa, . He smashed 11 fours and four sixes to score a classy 115 off 126 balls. Rohit added three crucial partnerships during his innings – 48 with Shikhar Dhawan, 105 with Virat Kohli and 60 with Shreyas Iyer. But his untimely wicket in the 43rd over stopped India from reaching 300-mark.India’s ability to fend off the new ball and not lose many wickets has been paying dividends off late. Opener Shikhar Dhawan had said earlier in the series that their team’s ability to see off the first 10 overs without losing many wickets – just one in most cases, has allowed the team to put pressure on the opposition.

Pacer Lungi Nigidi triggered a late collapse for India as he took four wickets, including back-to-back wickets in the 43rd. India lost three of those wickets for just two runs and in 12 balls, all caught behind by wicketkeeper Heinrich Klaasen. Ngidi finished with figures of four for 51 in nine overs and restricted India to 55 runs in the final ten overs.

Once again, MS Dhoni’s inability to push the tempo in the last five overs was exposed as he could only muster 13 runs from 17 balls before being sent back to the pavillion as Lungi Ngidi’.Bhuvneshwar Kumar added some crucial runs

Rohit and Kohli then maintained the early momentum and took India to 100-mark in 17.1 overs. After a cautious start, Rohit opened up by hitting two sixes, one each off Rabada and Ngidi, as he reached his first fifty (off 50 balls) of the series. While Rohit was scoring in good speed, Kohli was uncharacteristically slow hitting just one four in his first 52 balls. And the introduction of spinners, JP Duminy and Tabraiz Shamsi, also slowed down India’s scoring rate in the middle overs.

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