India and South Africa wrapped up their preparations for the upcoming ICC T20 World Cup 2022, with the latter claiming a 49-run consolation win at the Holkar Cricket Stadium in Indore on Tuesday, October 4.
As far as numbers are concerned, this was the Men in Blue’s first loss in 17 T20I games when chasing on home soil.
The result, however, meant India won the three-match series 2-1 and will depart for the ICC T20 World Cup 2022 in Australia with a hundred per cent record in bilateral series played in 2022 so far (eight series played, eight won).
With the pitch at the Holkar Cricket Stadium known as a boon for batters, it was a surprise when India captain Rohit Sharma opted to field first upon winning the toss. Needless to say, the hosts would get the taste of their own medicine at the end.
Rilee Rossouw, the Player of the Match for his unbeaten 48-ball 100, forged an 89-run stand for the second wicket with Quinton de Kock following the dismissal of Proteas captain Temba Bavuma for three runs.
The Rossouw-de Kock partnership helped South Africa recover from 30/1 in 4.1 overs to 120 runs in 12 overs. Quinton de Kock departed for 68 runs from 43 balls, but the runs kept flowing as Rilee Rossouw stitched another vital partnership (87 runs) with Tristan Stubbs.
Stubbs (23 runs in 18 balls) and David Miller (19 runs in five balls) played effective cameos as Rossouw’s century powered the Proteas to finish their innings at 227/3. The score was the highest total hit by an opposition team against India in India in T20Is.
At the other end, the Indian crowd in Indore were left in a moment of shock as they lost Rohit Sharma (0) and Shreyas Iyer (2) within the first three overs of their 228-run chase.
With Rishabh Pant out for 27, Dinesh Karthik tried to inject confidence into the hosts with a 21-ball 46. But post his dismissal, India’s batting looked like a sinking ship.
The lower order pairing of Deepak Chahar (31) and Umesh Yadav (20 not out) tried to put up a late fight, but South Africa’s Dwaine Pretorius would claim their wickets and put the finishing touches to the game in 18.3 overs.
Key talking points
Redemption for Rossouw
Rilee Rossouw had a point to prove in the third and final T20I against India. The 32-year-old had failed to score a single run in the first two games in the series, but his never-say-die attitude helped to bounce back and register the first T20I hundred of his career.
Rohit Sharma holds unwanted record
Despite claiming the series with his team, Rohit Sharma had a night to forget with the bat. While Kagiso Rabada claimed Rohit’s wicket for the 11th time in international cricket, the Mumbai-born cricketer registered his fourth duck as India’s T20I captain. He went past Virat Kohli (3).
A first home series win against South Africa
India’s 2-1 T20I series triumph was their first in four attempts against South Africa at home. After the Proteas won the first series 2-0 in 2015/16, the teams played out draws in 2019/20 (1-1) and in 2022 (2-2).
Following the end of the T20I series, a revamped Indian team led by Shikhar Dhawan will take on South Africa in a three-game ODI series starting Thursday, October 6.
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