Shikhar Dhawan and Virat Kohli guided India to a comprehensive nine-wicket victory over South Africa in the second One-Day International at SuperSport Park in Centurion on Sunday. India chased down the meagre 119-run target with 29.3 overs (177 balls) to spare as the visitors took 2-0 lead in the six-match series.
After Kohli won the toss and opted to bowl first, Indian wrist spinners Yuzvendra Chahal and Kuldeep Yadav again proved too hot to handle for South African batsmen, as the duo helped the visitors bundle out the hosts for 118 in 32.2 overs. It was the lowest total ever scored on this ground.
Chasing the small target, Dhawan and Kohli added an unbeaten 93 runs for the second wicket after India lost opener Rohit Sharma (15) in the fourth over. Dhawan hit nine fours in his 56-ball 51 knock, his 24th ODI fifty, while Kohli’s 46 off 50 balls included a six and four boundaries. Fast bowler Kagiso Rabada (1/24) was the only bowler for the hosts to land a wicket.
The one-sided contest witnessed a side drama too when the play was stopped for lunch with India needing just two runs to win and that too with nine wickets and 31 overs in hand. India were 93/1 after 15 overs at the scheduled break. In terms of the playing conditions, the umpires extended play by four overs or 15 minutes.
To the astonishment of players, spectators and commentators, the umpires then stuck to the letter of the regulations and ordered a 40-minute lunch break after the end of the extension as India reached 117/1 in 19 overs.
Leg-spinner Chahal picked up his maiden five-wicket haul to finish with figures of five for 22 and left-armer Yadav took three for 20.
South Africa was led by new captain Aiden Markram, playing his third ODI, as they were without their regular skipper Faf du Plessis and former captain AB de Villiers, after both were ruled out due to injury.
Sent in to bat, Hashim Amla and the out-of-form Quinton de Kock put on 39 for the first wicket before Amla was caught behind for 23 off an inside edge from Bhuvneshwar Kumar. The spinners then took command as they took three wickets off six balls to reduce the Proteas to 51/4.
De Kock was caught at deep midwicket off Chahal for 20 before Markram fell for eight in similar fashion off Yadav. Four balls later David Miller was out for nought, caught at slip.
JP Duminy and new cap Khaya Zondo both scored 25 and shared a partnership of 48 before the last six wickets tumbled for 19 runs.
Brief Scores: India 119/1 in 20.3 overs (Dhawan 51*, Kohli 46*) beat South Africa 118 by nine wickets.