Virat Kohli’s team India became the first team to win a bilateral series in South Africa after having touring the country over a period of 25 years. India created history by beating the Proteas by 73 runs in the fifth ODI to seal the series 4-1 with one more match to go.
The visitors have been on another level led by skipper Virat Kohli and the wrist spin duo of Yuzvendra Chahal and Kuldeep Yadav. With this special series win, the No. 1 team in the ICC ODI Rankings has maintained its supreme record of winning each and every bilateral series in this format since the 4-1 drubbing against Australia back in January 2016.
It was a Rohit Sharma delight at Port Elizabeth as India’s ‘Hitman’ slammed a fantastic ton (115) to light up his side’s innings with the visitors managing 275 in 50 overs. In reply, South Africa were bundled for a paltry 202 runs with the wrist spinners inflicting damage once again. Yadav claimed 4/57 and Chahal impressed with figures of 2/43 to hand a heavy blow to the hosts.
HISTORY created!#TeamIndia's first bilateral ODI series win in South Africa! An unassailable 4-1 lead now with just one more to play. #SAvIND pic.twitter.com/qrJerFGZXc
— BCCI (@BCCI) February 13, 2018
- Virat Kohli became the first Indian skipper to win an ODI series in South Africa
- Kohli has scored an emphatic 429 runs in five innings
- India’s wrist spin duo have picked a total of 30 wickets in five matches
- Kohli’s side has won 9 ODI series on the trot
South African falter in chase
South Africa started off on a positive note in pursuit of 275, with Hashim Amla and Aiden Markram adding 52 runs for the first wicket. They set the tempo high with skipper Markram hitting a run-a-ball 32. But he could not get a big score after Jasprit Bumrah gave the visitors the breakthrough.
The Proteas stumbled from there on with JP Duminy (1) and AB de Villiers (6) falling in quick succession to leave the side reeling at 65/3. The Proteas needed a solid partnership from there on and David Miller provided that with Amla as the duo added 62 runs for the fourth wicket. Miller looked set and together with Amla, they looked to threaten India.
Chahal got Miller, who threw away his wicket trying to charge down the wicket. Amla brought up his half-century and with Heinrich Klaasen in the middle, another partnership was need of the hour. But Amla (71) could not fully capitalise as he set on a suicidal single. Hardik Pandya threw down the stumps at the bowler’s end, which ultimately doused the Proteas’ fire.
Klaasen (39) got a start, but could not convert it into anything substantial. Kuldeep then got into the groove and got the dangerous Andile Phehlukwayo for a nought. From there on the spin twins took over and Yadav damaged Proteas hopes with the asking rate spiking rapidly.
Rohit’s 100 gives India the push
Earlier, after failing in the first four ODIs, Rohit Sharma was in his zone and struck a defiant 115 runs of 126 deliveries, He first shared a crucial 48-run stand with opening in-form partner Shikhar Dhawan (32) before adding a sublime 105 runs with Kohli.
Kohli played watchfully for his 36 runs and looked set for a big score, but was run-out. Ajinkya Rahane followed suit in similar fashion after another mix-up with Sharma. But Rohit made amends for playing a part in both dismissals by going on to score big runs.
Congratulations to @ImRo45 on his 17th ODI century! It's his first in South Africa! 👏 #SAvIND pic.twitter.com/8JSSxzdYB1
— ICC (@ICC) February 13, 2018
Rohit, who notched up his 17th ODI century, hit 11 boundaries and four sixes in his 126-ball innings. With that he brought up his maiden ton in South Africa. The star batsman added another 50-run stand with Shreyas Iyer (30), for the fifth wicket.
India suffered a mini-collapse from there on, losing four wickets for 29 runs. Lungi Ngidi was the catalyst for the hosts after claiming career-best figures of 4/51. India managed to add only 55 runs in the final 10 overs.
India will play their sixth and final ODI on Friday at SuperSport Park in Centurion.
Wishes Pour In
Numero Uno!! A fantastic series win by #TeamIndia🇮🇳 Impressive work by both the wrist spinners, @imkuldeep18 and @yuzi_chahal and a great Knock by @ImRo45. Keep it up, boys👍 pic.twitter.com/DgJlYSBAiP
— Sachin Tendulkar (@sachin_rt) February 13, 2018
Congratulations India on a historic series win. The wrist spinners have been incredible and this win must be really sweet for Virat and the boys. Thoroughly outplayed South Africa #SAvIND
— VVS Laxman (@VVSLaxman281) February 13, 2018
Many Congratulations to the Indian Cricket team on their first bilateral series win in South Africa. Brilliant consistency and hunger throughout and winning this series overseas is just a sign of things to come. Special team #SAvIND pic.twitter.com/eISyJ6HzUN
— Virender Sehwag (@virendersehwag) February 13, 2018