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5 Takeaways From India Cricket's Dominant Win Over South Africa Cricket At ICC T20I 2022
India cricket chased it down with KL Rahul and Suryakumar Yadav at the crease, South Africa cricket was restricted to only 106/8.
Here are the main events taking place in the ICC T20I 2022 series:
Events 1: Indian Cricket's Arshdeep Delivers A Bowling Masterclass
India cricket was in the driving seat of the opening contest, thanks to their pace cartel, but it was Arsheep Singh who left South Africa’s top order in trouble.
The Punjab Kings star sent Quinton De Kock to the hut on 1 and Riley Rossouw on a first-ball duck.
Deepak Chahar had already dismissed skipper Temba Bavuma with a gem of an in-swinger so the quick loss of three wickets meant that the middle order was brought it way earlier than expected on a tricky Kerala track that offered almost nothing to the batsmen.
Singh went on to dismiss David Miller on a duck as well, something that pushed the African side even further down the ropes. Miller has been T20 royalty ever since his debut and his early dismissal meant more trouble for the visitors.
The left-arm quick was named Player of the Match for his 3/32.
One may argue that he conceded the most runs as compared to other Indian bowlers, but he played the key role in providing early breakthroughs to Rohit Sharma in his opening spell.
The context of the game may have been different had he not sent the three SA betters back to the pavilion that early into the game.
Events 2: South Africa Cricket's Maharaj Shows He Can Bat
Keshav Maharaj’s family left India 148 years ago but it seemed like he has been batting on Indian tracks ever since.
The left-arm orthodox has been known for weaving magic around batsmen in every format of the game, but he has shown now why he can be equally destructive if given the chance to bat.
Maharaj scored a brilliant 41 off 35 to become the top scorer of the game for South Africa, followed by Aiden Markram (25) and Wayne Parnell (24).
Batting at number 8 on an odd pitch, he struck five fours and two sixes before his innings were brought to an abrupt halt by Harshal Patel.
Events 3: South Africa Cricket Pace Cartel Poses Early Threats
The 107-run target seemed rather easy for the stars that India has up their order until Kagiso Rabada and Anric Nortje opened the second half of the innings.
India cricket team lost their captain Rohit Sharma on a duck and made just 17 in the powerplay, their second lowest powerplay totals ever in ICC T20s.
KL Rahul survived a bunch of LBW calls and reviews. The first ball after the powerplay, Nortje got Virat Kohli edged and the wicketkeeper collected behind the stumps.
It was his extra pace and bounce that got the better of the Royal Challengers Bangalore star who tried to whip the short ball over point.
The balls kept changing their bounce. It was swinging miles both ways and some deliveries were kept low while some were nipping extraordinarily, making it harder to bat in both halves.
The difference between both sides was the way they played the powerplay. The story may have been different had the hosts been batting first.
South Africa cricket was 9/5 at one time when Arshdeep Singh and Deepak Chahar took charge and made the most of the conditions.
On the flip side, India cricket was patient with the bat because they knew that the target they are pursuing doesn’t pose any run-rate troubles.
Events 4: Patience Of Indian Cricket KL Rahul
Rahul was down but not out. Some say it was his last chance to retain the opening spot in the team after a string of low scores and the stick he got for apparently playing at a low strike rate.
With Kohli and Sharma, two of the most experienced and arguably best batters on the team dismissed early in the game, Rahul stayed patient and built a partnership with Suryakumar Yadav after the powerplay.
He waited for the ball to get a bit old because it was a matter of not losing wickets this time, unlike most T20s where teams have to go about spanking the ball around the park and chase high totals.
Rahul batted a strike rate below 50 at times in the first six overs, and rightly so that proved to be the game-changer.
He finished his knock at 51* (55), reaching his half-century with a huge six over square leg to Tabraiz Shamsi in the 17th over.
He was playing second fiddle to Yadav, but his presence on the crease was crucial because the pitch hinted at a possible collapse in the batting, just like South Africa did.
After the game, Sharma had an interesting say on the pitch.
“There was no sun so it made it difficult to hit. Both teams were in the contest. We got wickets upfront, and that was the turning point. No matter what the conditions, you still have to execute your plans,” the Indian cricket team captain said.
“When you swing the ball like that, any batter will struggle. 107, we knew it was not going to be that easy. We got to respect the conditions at times and understand what shots can be played. We lost two wickets, but that partnership was crucial.”
Events 5: Sky Changes The Game On His Own
Everyone knows how unorthodox Suryakumar Yadav’s batting is but to bat the way he did in front of one of the best bowling line-ups in the world was commendable.
He opened his account with a huge six over the third man which he miscued while trying to play his signature six over fine leg.
A couple of balls later, he flicked Nortje for a mammoth six, as if sending a message to the dressing room that he’s batting on a different wicket than other batters on either side.
Sky’s quick runs allow the India cricket team to stay afloat and take a sigh of relief. He propelled the innings with a boundary now and then, allowing Rahul to free his mind as well.
His 50* off 33 included five fours and three sixes.
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