IND vs SA, 1st ODI | Who said what ft. Sanju Samson, Heinrich Klassen

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India fell to a 9-run defeat against South Africa in the first ODI


IND vs SA, 1st ODI | Who said what ft. Sanju Samson, Heinrich Klassen

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SportsCafe Desk


South Africa remained unfazed by the turbulent weather in Lucknow on Thursday to register a clinical win against a second-string India side in the first ODI. Heinrich Klassen and David Miller starred with the bat before a stellar Sanju Samson knock almost took the hosts to an unlikely victory.

After a disappointing loss in the T20I series, South Africa looked like a revitalized bunch in the first ODI against India at the Ekana Stadium in Lucknow on Thursday. A delayed start due to incessant showers meant the match was curtailed to a 40-overs a side. Openers Quinton de Kock and Janneman Malan provided them a good start despite the ball zipping around, the former particularly impressing with 48(54), However, Shardul Thakur inflicted a middle-order collapse with two quick wickets before David Miller and Heinrich Klassen steadied the innings with scores of 75* and 74* respectively. Chasing 250, the Men in Blue never found any momentum but a quick half-century from Shreyas Iyer and Sanju Samson's stellar 86(63) brought the team close to victory, only to fall nine runs short in the end.

Losing skipper Shikhar Dhawan was all praise for the efforts of his young team. 

Very proud of the way the boys played. It's tremendous the way Shreyas, Samson and Shardul played. I thought 250 was too many runs, because the wicket had turn and seam. Even fielding-wise, we leaked a few runs; but it'll be a good experience and learning for the young boys.

Shikhar Dhawan

Proteas captain Temba Bavuma was quick to acknowledge Samson's efforts before patting the middle order on their back for rescuing the team from deep waters. 

A good fight at the end, obviously Sanju pushed us at the end, but the boys stood firm and took us to the win. There wasn't much grass on the surface, we lost a couple of wickets in the middle overs, myself and Aiden (Markram), but the boys knuckled down. Miller and Klaasen played positively, stung together a partnership and took us to a good score. Bowling upfront was good, in the first 15 overs by KG and Parnell. I thought we lost our way in the middle overs, gave away far too many runs, but at the end, the result did go our way and I'm happy with that. 

Temba Bavuma

After struggling for support initially, Samson accelerated in the later half of his innings but by then the required run rate was already beyond salvation. He had a few kind words for his counterpart David Miller as well, who had also scored a century in the second T20I.  

It is always nice to spend some time in the middle and we always play to take our team over the line. I missed connecting two shots, next time I will work even harder. But I am satisfied with my contribution. Their bowlers were going about things nicely, Tabraiz Shamsi was a little expensive today so we felt we can target them. We knew he would bowl the last over, I knew if I had to get 24 runs in the final over, I can hit four sixes. We have some space to improve but we also need to look at the batters we are bowling too. I think David Miller is the best finisher in the world at the moment, bowling against him on this ground was very challenging.

Sanju Samson

Samson has just managed 24 international appearances despite being a household name for years after his exploits with the Rajasthan Royals in the Indian Premier League, but expressed eagerness to ensure his stay this time around is longer.

It's a fortunate thing to be playing cricket for India. Indian cricket has a lot of big superstars and if you are getting this kind of support and know your batting this much, then it's a big motivation for me. When we started playing cricket when we were young, we all wanted these things only. So it's a dream and it's getting fulfilled. I am feeling very happy. And because of the fans, the expectations also go up. For instance, the practice sessions go from 2 hours to 4 hours. I tell myself that I have to perform in every innings. Expectations of people have risen. Accordingly, my preparation should also increase and I am looking to perform better.

Sanju Samson

Man of the match Heinrich Klassen did not get an opportunity in the T20I series but impressed in his first game of the tour further improving his ODI average against India to 61.33. he also commented on South Africa's struggles in the ongoing ICC Cricket World Cup Super League with the team needing a whitewash to keep hopes of a direct qualification alive.

Not easy at all [when I went in to bat]. Ball was moving around, and just when I went in, it was spinning. I don't know why [the good record against India]!"To qualify for next year's World Cup is going to be really hard but we are definitely going to try. Our goal at this moment is the T20 World Cup coming up in a couple of days time. We are not too worried about other things we can't control at this moment. Every time we get on to the field wearing the South African jersey we want to win the game. We are just taking step by step, game by game at this moment.

Heinrich Klassen

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