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India clinch historic series win

| | Port Elizabeth (South Africa)
India clinch historic series win

India registered a memorable series victory after South Africa were bowled out for 201 in 42.2 overs, while chasing the 275-run target set by the visitors. As a result of their dominant 73-run victory, the Men in Blue won their maiden ODI series in South Africa 4-1 with still one match to go.

Hashim Amla shined with the bat, with a fighting 71 from 92 balls. But his fellow batsmen let him down as the hosts struggled to build proper partnerships. For India Kuldeep Yadav picked up four wickets, while Hardik Pandya and Y Chahal managed to pick two wickets each.

Earlier, opener Rohit Sharma scored his maiden century on South African soil as India posted 274/7 against the Proteas in the fifth One-Day International at the St. George's Park here on Tuesday.

Rohit (115) who notched up his 17th ODI century hit 11 boundaries and four sixes in his 126-ball innings. It was also his second ton against South Africa, the first one came in 2015 at Kanpur when he scored 150.

The century also helped Rohit become the fourth highest century scorer in ODIs for India, following Sachin Tendulkar (49), Virat Kohli (34) and Sourav Ganguly (22).

For South Africa, Lungisani Ngidi was the pick of the bowlers returning figures of 4/51 while Kagiso Rabada picked up a wicket.

Asked to bat, openers Shikhar Dhawan (34) and Rohit got India off to a decent start before the former was removed by South African pacer Kagiso Rabada while trying to pull a good bouncer which ended straight into the arms of Andile Phehlukwayo at deep square leg.

Rohit, who struggled to score in the previous ODIs started his innings in similar fashion. However, a boundary and a hit over the fence in back-to-back overs set the momentum for the Mumbai batsman, who kept going from there.

Later, one-down batsman Virat Kohli (36) played a slow 54-ball innings. He was involved in a 105-run second wicket stand with Rohit before he was ran out by Jean-Paul Duminy.

Following the dismissal, Ajinkya Rahane (8) again fell victim to Rohit's mis-timed call and was ran out by Morne Morkel.

However, Rohit continued his flow of runs and brought up his century in the 36th over after he got a lucky escape batting on 96 being dropped by Tabraiz Shamsi.

Incoming batsman Shreyas Iyer (30) played a steady innings to keep the flow of runs going. He hit two boundaries in his 37-ball innings and was involved in a 60-run fourth wicket partnership with Rohit.

Rohit, who ended his drought of runs was cleaned up pacer Ngidi while trying to play a late cut which was easily taken by the keeper.

Incoming batsman, Hardik Pandya (0) was sent back by Ngidi in the very next delivery for a duck, which brought former Indian captain Mahendra Singh Dhoni on crease.

Later, Iyer, who kept the momentum of runs for India also fell prey to Ngidi in similar fashion.

Post the dismissal, Dhoni scored 13 runs while before becoming the fourth scalp to Ngidi while Bhuvneshwar Kumar (19 not out) contributed important runs in the lower order.

Duminy to lead SA in T20s

Cricket South Africa on Tuesday named JP Duminy as captain for the three-match T20 series against India starting in Johannesburg on February 18.

Duminy will lead the side in absence of injured Faf du Plessis, who fractured his index finger in the first ODI at Durban.

Stand-in skipper Aiden Markram and senior batsman Hashim Amla have been rested for the series.

Batsman Christiaan Jonker has been included in the squad while keeper-batsman Heinrich Klaasen has also been called up to the T20 team for the first time, along with fast bowler Junior Dala.

Leg spinner Imran Tahir too has been left out, although chief selector Linda Zondi said that he has just been rested to give left arm spinners Tabraiz Shamsi and Aaron Phangiso more game time.

Fast bowlers Morne Morkel, Kagiso Rabada and Lungi Ngidi have also been rested owing to the heavy workload this home summer.

South Africa T20 squad: JP Duminy (capt), Farhaan Behardien, Junior Dala, AB de Villiers, Reeza Hendricks, Christiaan Jonker, Heinrich Klaasen, David Miller, Chris Morris, Dane Paterson, Aaron Phangiso, Andile Phehlukwayo, Tabraiz Shamsi, Jon-Jon Smuts.

 
 
 
 
 

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