Rohit, Kuldeep shine in maiden bilateral series win in HIS

the TOUR of INDIA, SOUTH AFRICA, 2018Cricbuzz Staff • Last updated Wednesday, 14 February, 2018, 12:29 AM Rohit Sharma scored his 17th ODI ton to help India win the total victory in the fifth ODI. © AFP India recorded their maiden bilateral series win in South Africa with a 73-victory in Port Elizabeth on Tuesday (13 February). Put in place by Rohit Sharma’s 17th ODI ton earlier, India’s bowlers managed to keep South Africa in check with Kuldeep Yadav finished with a four-wicket haul. Chasing 274 on a field that has been gradually slowing down, South Africa have been preserved in the game, in large part, by Hashim Amla’s 71, but none of the other batsmen managed to give him a support long enough to mount a fight in the game. Hardik Pandya turned out to be an unlikely star with the ball for India, picking the wickets of JP Duminy and AB de Villiers in quick succession after Jasprit Bumrah got the opening breakthrough. From there, it was only Amla, who stood between India and victory. The opener continued to fight, try to bring together partnerships with David Miller (36) and Heinrich Klaasen (39). But its a race to the 35th, Pandya turned out to be a coup that South Africa couldn’t recover from. And despite, Klaasen’s the end of the assault, India has managed to wrap the handle, with relative ease and registered his ninth bilateral series victory in ODIs. Playing a big role in the victory was Rohit Sharma who was the last person in India’s batting triumvirate at the top to be among the runs, as he swept to an indifferent run of scores in the ODI series to get 115. But Sharma’s 17th ODI ton was only enough to get India to a big total. India’s all-too-familiar problem of disorders of the arrival, has arisen once more, with Lungi Ngidi to pick up three wickets in the final overs, including that of Rohit, to restrict India to just 274 7. On a pitch that was expected to slow down, India began to look forward to, apparently in a bid to take toll of the hard new ball. Put into bat, it was Shikhar Dhawan who set the tone for India. His breezy 23-ball 34 eased a lot of pressure on Rohit, who has decided not to take first strike in this match. But as the latter also took his eye, he marked his return to form with a superb six off Kagiso Rabada in the sixth on. Rabada was Rohit’s nemesis-in-chief throughout this series, pick him up three times out of four, but with a small mental battle won, Rohit was back in his comfort zone. India’s open ran down to a fifty-run stand but only two short of the mark, Dhawan fell to Rabada’s short-ball trap, pulling it to the deep backward square leg. But the wicket did nothing to deter Rohit, who was now joined by another man in form – Virat Kohli. The duo has shared a constant 105-run stand for the second wicket, without even attempting to be flashy. That partnership could have ended a little earlier, had Kohli been declared out stumped on 29. But a close call had decided the drummer’s favorable by Aleem Dar, but Kohli’s luck ran out soon. The duo, which had hit so well up until then, has been involved in their seventh instance to run as a pair, with Kohli to be caught well short at the end of his stay on 36. Rohit went to turn back to the next man in, Ajinkya Rahane, who was executed for 8. And it could have been any worse than from the point of view of India, had Tabraiz Shamsi held a chance given by Rohit on 96. Rohit went on to bring a ton which was littered with cuts and pulls that are easy on the eyes, and was able to add 60 more with Shreyas Iyer for the fourth wicket. With 236 on the board of directors of the 43rd over, India were looking at a total of nearly 300, but Lungi Ngidi triggered a collapse, with Rohit and Hardik Pandya caught behind off successive deliveries, before getting a Iyer in his next course. Ngidi went to pick up MS Dhoni later in the inning, to deny India’s to try to speed up, keeping them down to a chaseable 274. But as it turned out, he was 73 too many for South Africa. Brief Scores: India 274/7 in 50 overs (Rohit Sharma 115, Virat Kohli 36; Lungi Ngidi 4/51), who beat South Africa 201 in 42.2 overs (Hashim Amla 71; Kuldeep Yadav 4/57) by 73 runs. © CricbuzzRELATED STORIES

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