Kohli magic leads India to win over South Africa

08 February, 2018, 09:31 | Author: Laura Christensen

South Africa would have hoped that one of their senior batsmen could match, or even surpass Kohli's brilliant efforts, if their run-chase was to prove successful.

South Africa: 179 runs in 40 overs (Jean-Paul Duminy 51; Kuldeep Yadav 4/23, Yuzvendra Chahal 4/46) vs India: 303/6 (Virat Kohli 160 not out, Shikhar Dhawan 76, Bhuvneshwar Kumar 16 not out; J.P.Duminy 2/60).

The visitors won the first ODI in Durban by six wickets and handed a nine-wicket defeat to South Africa in Centurion.

But Kohli's masterclass, the dominance of Chahal-Kuldeep duo and the absence of three of their leading batsmen - Faf du Plessis, AB de Villiers and Quinton de Kock - made it a lost cause for them.

Aiden Markram won the toss and elected to field.

The Indian Captain has played a total of 205 ODI matches and has an impressive strike rate of 91.77. With a flurry of boundaries, Dhawan completed his 25th ODI fifty, needing 42 deliveries for it and soon Kohli completed his 46th half-century as things looked ominious for South Africa with India reaching 140 runs by the end of 23 overs.

While most Indian batsmen struggled after South Africa opted to bowl, Kohli made batting look easy. He surpassed Ganguly's 127 against South Africa scored at Johannesburg in 2001.


MS Dhoni (10) and Kedar Jadhav (1) went cheaply but the India skipper launched a late surge and a diving David Miller was unable to deny him a first maximum as his momentum took him over the ropes, with another two boundaries to finish taking the tourists beyond 300 and capping a phenomenal innings. Kohli also became the first Indian batsman to hit a hundred against the home team at Newlands.

This was Kohli's second highest ODI score. Oddly enough, quite a few South African bowlers used off cutters as the ball seemed to stop before coming onto the bat, indicating that the wrist-spinners will once come into play.

Kohli's series tally of runs has gone to 318 in only three innings, which is a record too. The previous best was Ricky Ponting's tally of 283 runs in 2001-02.

Fast bowler Lungi Ngidi, who has already played in Tests and Twenty20 internationals, was making his one-day worldwide debut in place of Morne Morkel, while all-rounder Andile Phehlukwayo replaced wrist spinner Tabraiz Shamsi.

Kohli said the duo has been courageous in going after wickets even at the risk of conceding a few runs.

Meanwhile, Andile Phehlukwayo will replace left-arm spinner Tabraiz Shamsi. Rohit Sharma (0) continued his poor run in this ODI series and was caught behind off the sixth ball he faced. Ganguly scored 11 centuries while leading the team in 146 ODI's. The hosts, however, needed him to fire again in the second innings with India negating the lead courtesy a Virat Kohli special. It appeared it was a good decision on stand-in captain Markram's part.

There was also brute force, with Kohli particularly enjoying a sweet pull shot off Kagiso Rabada's penultimate ball that sailed into the Railway Stand.

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