After getting two lives in two consecutive overs, David Miller made India pay for their mistakes and with a swashbuckling 39-run innings, gave SA a five-wicket victory. India posted 292 thanks to a Shikhar Dhawan century, but rain interruption resulted in SA be given a 202-run target in 28 overs.
Brief scores: India 289/7 (Shikhar Dhawan 109, Virat Kohli 75, MS Dhoni 42*; Lungi Ngidi 2-52) lost to South Africa 207/5 (Heinrich Klaasen 43*, David Miller 39; Kuldeep Yadav 2/51, Jasprit Bumrah 1/21) by five wickets.
India won the toss and opted to bat first as they came into the Johannesburg ODI with a more adventurous middle order with Shreyas Iyer coming in for Kedar Jadhav. South Africa came into the game with the huge boost of AB de Villiers returning to the squad, who replaced Khaya Zondo in the starting eleven, and Morne Morkel coming to replace Imran Tahir.
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With the target hardly looking difficult, South Africa started on a confident note with skipper Aiden Markram and Hashim Amla negotiating with Jasprit Bumrah and Bhuvneshwar. However, the skipper eventually fell in the eighth over as Bumrah caught him plumb on the front foot, following which the game was paused for over two hours due to rain. Once the game restarted, it was the same old story as Duminy was caught plumb in front of his stumps by Kuldeep Yadav. The incoming AB de Villiers relieved some of the pressure with a much-needed boundary in the 14th over, but he was standing at the non-striker’s end when Amla was sent packing by a brilliant catch by Bhuvneshwar off Kuldeep’s bowling. Just as the momentum seemed to be swinging in India’s direction, de Villiers took 17 runs off a Chahal over to put the pressure back on the visitors. However, with de Villiers being caught at fine leg and 99 required off 11 overs, the game had seen another swing of momentum.
Miller and Klassen keep series alive with supreme slog hitting
But the twists weren’t done yet as Miller was sent packing by Chahal only to be given a lifeline after the Indian had overstepped his line. Miller made the visitors pay as he led the way for his side scoring 37 runs off the next three overs to bring the equation to a 57 required off 42 balls. With 15 runs coming off the next over, the hosts were well and truly in the driving seat and Kohli decided to bring in his death over specialist, Jasprit Bumrah, in the hope of getting a breakthrough. Even though that didn’t yield a wicket, Chahal in the next over got rid of the dangerous Miller but the equation had reduced to almost a run a ball. With Klassen and Phehlukwayo taking 17 runs of Kuldeep’s last over, the match was virtually done with South Africa needing just nine to win off the last three overs.
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