India recorded their first ever ODI series against South Africa in South Africa after they won the fifth ODI at the St. Georges Park in Port Elizabeth by 73 runs.
Want to be a professional cricketer?
India has been formidable in the limited overs format in the last 12 to 18 months and has faced minimal competition from any team they faced.
South Africa on the other hand has been struggling with their form both with the bat as well as the bat. South Africa has been unlucky as some of the key players have got injured just before the start of the ODI series.
With AB De Villiers ruled out of the first three ODIs’ the team suffered another shock when their skipper Faf Du Plessis was also ruled out of the ODI series due to a finger injury after the first ODI.
The Proteas middle order struggled against the Indian spin duo of Yuzvendra Chahal and Kuldeep Yadav.
The spin duo has picked up 30 wickets in all and has been the main architects of South Africa’s dismal run in the ODI series.
South African top order Hashim Amla who too struggled against the spin duo said that the South African team has never been such position.
The Proteas were being considered as to favorites to win the series but the India team has completely turned the situation around.
Amla said, “I don’t think in one-day cricket we’ve been in this position. Maybe in 2008 in England, when we didn’t have a good one-day series but there are always positives and learning to take from it. We’ve got a few younger guys in the team who will think, ‘Phew, one-day cricket is tough’. But thankfully it will only get easier for them because we haven’t played our best cricket. We’ve played decent cricket in patches but sub-par cricket from what we’re used to.”
Amla also added that this loss against India is a blessing in disguise ahead of the World Cup in England next year. He said, “When it comes to other series or World Cups we’ll be better prepared. Also we have won so many series in the past back to back, we were very fortunate and none of us took it for granted. But to lose a series like this gets your feet back on the ground. “As a one-day unit you are always searching for certain things here or there, and I’m sure this has given us that impetus. When you’re playing well and someone has a brilliant innings, cracks can be covered. But when you lose in this manner, whatever adjustments need to be made, you focus on it more. For me that’s a very positive thing,”
Amla believes that the home side has a lot of pride at stake hosts in the sixth ODI, “The World Cup is not far away. India are probably playing their best team. Whatever experience we get against them we will take forward. It is (easy to motivate ourselves). At every stage in the series you look at the positives. Now the positive is you want to end the series on a good note. The coach has a long-term vision and a few ideas up his sleeve, and he has the opportunity to play that. That will give us motivation.”
Here’s the news feed: