Published: Sun, February 25, 2018
Sports | By Nelson Rowe

South Africa bowls first against India in T20 series decider

South Africa bowls first against India in T20 series decider

That was enough to create some pressure and Dhawan was run-out off the first ball of the over that followed. After a narrow 1-2 loss in the Test series, India played magnificently well in the ODI series to win the 6-match series 5-1. The team management usually clubs all formats together and is celebrating ascendancy over South Africa since the last week of January.

South Africa was being viewed as an acid test for the Indian run machine, and not only has he passed that test but aced it.

Raina returned to the squad after he last played in the shortest format for India in February previous year while he last played an ODI in July 2015.

Jonker smashed his way to 49 runs off just 24 balls and nearly took the hosts to victory before falling off the last ball of the match.

South Africa: Reeza Hendricks, JJ Smuts, JP Duminy (c), David Miller, Farhaan Behardien, Heinrich Klaasen (wk), Andile Phehlukwayo, Chris Morris, Junior Dala, Dane Paterson, Tabraiz Shamsi, Aaron Phangiso (With Agencies inputs). It will win or lose them the match.

Duminy and Jonker then started accelerating and took on the Indian bowlers for a brief while.

Back where it all started under the watch of Table Mountain seven weeks ago, India won by seven runs to claim the T20 series 2-1 and head home with two of the three trophies on offer. But now the visitors were looking to accelerate, evident from Dhawan's stroke play and Manish Pandey's (13) efforts.

After losing Rohit Sharma early, Suresh Raina (43) and Shikhar Dhawan steadied India innings. As far as the T20 series is considered, India and Australia were supposed to play three. Axar Patel (0-16) was reserved for special attention and he proved expensive in the only over he bowled as Duminy scored his 11th T20I half-century off 38 balls.

However, in the 3rd T20I, Harmanpreet was left alone to carry the team on her shoulders with a 30-ball 48 as the middle-order collapsed and the visitors folded their innings for 133 in 17.5 overs. But skipper JP Duminy (55 off 41) and then Jonker nearly took SA home before Bhuvneshwar defended the 19 runs they needed to win.

This was also the second time that India won five matches in a bilateral ODI series outside Asia.

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