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Bowlers set up South Africa's series-clinching win

Visiting side wins by six wickets in 17.1 overs after bowling India out for 92 in second T20I

Bowlers set up South Africa's series-clinching win - Cricket News
Albie Morkel, in his first international game in 19 months, was the biggest beneficiary with career-best returns of 3 for 12.
South Africa beat India by six wickets in 17.1 overs to take an unassailable 2-0 lead in the three-match Twenty20 International series. South Africa’s bowlers did well to bowl India out for just 92, before the batsmen sealed a straightforward chase at the Barabati Stadium in Cuttack on Monday (October 5).
 
The total of 92 was India’s second lowest in the shortest format, behind the 74 all out against Australia it had got in Melbourne in 2008.
 
South Africa’s chase was halted twice due to a section of the crowd throwing water bottles on the ground, but resumed eventually and the visiting side completed victory with JP Duminy and David Miller at the crease.
 
R Ashwin was India’s best bowler, and scalped the first three wickets to fall to return figures of 3 for 24 in four overs, but given the low total, South Africa was always in control of the chase., despite two separate interruptions in play due to the crowd.
 
At the start, South Africa backed Faf du Plessis’s decision to field on a fresh pitch in Cuttack’s first-ever T20I with attacking bowling and sharp captaincy.
 


Having learnt from its Dharamsala experience, where the bowlers were expensive at the top end of India’s innings, South Africa dried up the runs by sticking to a back-of-the-length channel, and mixing it up with well-directed shorter balls.
 
Only four boundaries were allowed in the Power Play overs, by when India had also lost two wickets, and the pressure was clearly on the batsmen to shift gears. It resulted in the home side losing wickets in a heap.
 
While Albie Morkel, in his first international game in 19 months, was the biggest beneficiary with career-best returns of 3 for 12, his success was set up by the four bowlers who preceded him.
 
Shikhar Dhawan fell in the fourth over when he shuffled slightly early, and then tried to play across the line to a full and straight delivery from Chris Morris. CK Nandan, in his international debut as an on-field umpire, had an easy decision to make.
 
Two balls later, a hesitant Virat Kohli was caught short by Morris’s strong return from midwicket at the batting end, going for the second run. Not long after that, Rohit Sharma, last game’s centurion, could not beat David Miller’s direct hit from point. Then, Ambati Rayudu missed an inswinging full toss to give Kagiso Rabada his first international wicket on Indian soil.
 
Mahendra Singh Dhoni edged a wide ball from Morkel, and AB de Villiers lapped up a low catch behind the stumps. Then, Imran Tahir’s twin googlies scalped  two batsmen in two balls. Suresh Raina was tempted to drive one straight to Hashim Amla’s hands at cover, and Harbhajan Singh, who replaced S Aravind for this game, was bowled trying to guide the ball to the offside.
 


Ashwin avoided the hat-trick ball, but the tail lacked the wherewithal to counter the wily Morkel, as India’s innings ended in 17.2 overs. 
 
South Africa lost Amla in the second over of its chase when he flicked one to Rohit at leg slip. De Villiers was beaten by the lack of turn, as Ashwin became the first bowler to dismiss him thrice in T20Is.
 
Du Plessis, who had impressed with his proactive bowling changes in the field, stepped out to hit Ashwin for a four and a six in the long-off region in the first two deliveries of the sixth over. Ashwin followed that up with a flatter ball, before giving flight to the fourth delivery. Du Plessis fell for the bait, and Mohit Sharma ran backwards from mid-off to take a wonderful catch.
 
It showed Ashwins’s growing stature as a bowler, but even he could not prevent South Africa from winning a second successive time.
 
The teams will now head to Kolkata for the third and final T20I.

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