Rohit Sharma
Rohit Sharma was out for a duck (Credits: AP)

Last Update on: February 25th, 2018 at 01:41 am

After a hiccup in the 2nd T20I, the Men in Blue came back strongly and won the 3rd and the decisive T20I against the Proteas at the SuperSport Park in Centurion. Courtesy impressive innings from the blade of Suresh Raina and Shikhar Dhawan India reached 172/7 at the end of their allotted 20 overs. It was some expert bowling by the visitors who eventually helped them seal the series by runs

Again it was the South African skipper JP Duminy who won the toss and opted to field. Regular skipper Virat Kohli was ruled out of the decider due to a back-spasm. Rohit Sharma led the team in his absence. The right-hander began with some exquisite drives while Dhawan also began with a crisp boundary.

Suresh Raina who has been a permanent member of the playing XI in the series so far started off with some delightful shots. The southpaw played some wonderful shots and raced his way to a 43 of 31 deliveries. Raina scored a quickfire 43 of 27 deliveries before Tabraiz Shamsi dismissed him. He went for a straight six but was held out in the deep.

Shikhar Dhawan played a relatively sedate innings according to his standards. The southpaw was eventually dismissed on 47 off 40 deliveries. Comeback man Dinesh Karthik struck a quickfire 13 off 6 deliveries which ultimately helped the visitors to reach a score of 172.

In the absence of JJ Smuts, David Miller was elevated to open the innings with Reeza Hendricks. The hosts got off to a relatively sedate start. It was Bhuvneshwar Kumar again who provided the visitors with the maiden breakthrough. David Miller and JP Duminy held the fort but were unable to execute the big shots.

It was Suresh Raina who gave India the much-needed breakthrough in the form of David Miller. Hardik Pandya dismissed Heinrich Klassen who played a match-winning innings in the previous encounter on 7. Christian Jonker played a blinder oka knock towards the end of the innings. However it was the Indian bowlers who held on their nerve and helped India win the decider by 7 runs. Bhuvneshwar Kumar returned as the most successful bowler finishing with figures of 2/24 in 4 overs.


“To be honest, I thought we were 15 runs short. How the first half went, I thought we lost our way towards the end. I mean these things happen and we learn from it. It was a decent score and once again, the bowlers did it for us. We know how crucial it is for our top three to stay as long as possible. It has happened throughout the series. Last match, it was pleasing to see our middle order perform. Hopefully we can move forward as a group in the coming games. We discussed certain plans and it worked. We tried to keep the ball on the stumps. Their batsmen like width. So it made them go after the bowling after 6 overs. It was a complete bowling unit performance. Throughout the series, we showed a lot of intensity, which helped us get those crucial wins. We never backed down from whatever situation we were thrown in.”

Arya chakraborty

A Cricket Expert who loves revolving his life around the game. An extremely passionate music lover who loves singing and listening to Arijit Singh songs.