- Sinchan Saha | October 6, 2022 | 11:05 pm
IND vs SA, 1st ODI: Innings South Africa 249 for 4 (Miller 75*, Klaasen 74*, de Kock 48, Thakur 2-35) vs India
In the rain-reduced first ODI against India in Lucknow, South Africa posted a competitive total of 249 for 4 (Miller 75*, Klaasen 74*, de Kock 48, Thakur 2-35)
All thanks to an unbroken fifth-wicket partnership of 139 runs between Heinrich Klaasen and David Miller. Building on Quinton de Kock’s 48, the two increased South Africa’s score from 110 to 4 in the 23rd over and more than doubled it after 40 overs.
At 7.8 runs per over, Klaasen scored his fourth ODI century and Miller scored his 18th, putting pressure on India’s five-man attack. Ravi Bishnoi’s debut cost India 69 runs in eight overs, Mohammed Siraj and Avesh Khan were hit for over six, and Shardul Thakur and Kuldeep Yadav conceded at under five.
Siraj and Avesh opened with four testing overs each and made excellent use of bowler-friendly conditions to restrict South Africa to 28 runs in the eight-over powerplay. Both players moved and made the openers think twice about their off stump.They managed to escape after Janneman Malan was repeatedly beaten and de Kock was struck in the thigh.De Kock drove Avesh through the middle of the off, Malan hit two good pull shots to the boundary, and most importantly, they made it to the line.
When Thakur came on as the first change and drew Malan forward to take the edge, they were close to splitting, but Shubman Gill stopped it at the first slip.Two overs later, Malan hit a full ball to Shreyas Iyer at midwicket, and Thakur got his man. The first stand ended on 49.
That brought the under-fire captain Temba Bavuma to the crease, and when he bottom-edged Thakur on to his foot and came close to cutting on, he almost fell for his third duck in four innings on the tour. Bavuma played an authoritative reverse sweep off a no-ball from Bishnoi, giving the impression that the tide had turned for him. He then drove Bishnoi through a deep point, but the fun didn’t last long. Bavuma did not reach double-figures on this tour yet because he was bowled between the bat and the pad by Thakur using a cross-seamer.
Shikhar Dhawan brought in Kuldeep to replace Bishnoi because he saw an opportunity to break into South Africa’s middle order. Aiden Markram was clearly unable to read Kuldeep. Markram was bowled as he attempted to defend by the leg spinner after being fixed by the googly and the shorter delivery. After 16 overs, South Africa were 71 for 3.
Kuldeep continued to pose a problem for South Africa, and he had Klaasen top-edging a sweep; however, the opportunity missed Dhawan at slip and was thrown wide.A well-placed slog-sweep between fine leg and deep square not long after gave Klaasen his own back. South Africa’s recovery was on track when de Kock was out lbw when he missed a reverse sweep to become Bishnoi’s first ODI wicket. Klaasen and de Kock’s fourth-wicket partnership grew to 39 at a scoring rate above six, and de Kock was out for his first ODI wicket.De Kock looked over the play, but ball tracking revealed that Bishnoi was hitting the middle stump.
Miller was ready to tee off with 17.4 overs remaining and a solid foundation in place. He was given a short, wide delivery in the front and hit it through the covers for four. He then swept the first Kuldeep ball he faced for four more and tore Bishnoi back over his head for six, bringing up the heavy artillery.Dhawan brought Thakur back after the spinners gave up 26 runs in three overs. Thakur calmed things down and even threatened Miller’s outside edge.
However, Bishnoi had to be brought back because there were only five bowlers in the attack, and Klaasen took over as the aggressor. He hit Kuldeep over the covers for his first six and found the gap between square leg and midwicket for four, leaving South Africa on 164 for 4 with ten overs remaining.
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As Miller and Klaasen alternated between an all-out attack and saving themselves for the end, India conceded 31 runs in the subsequent five overs. Miller hit fifty off fifty balls in the 36th over, and Klaasen hit fifty off 52 before flat-battering Avesh for six. When Miller was dropped off at Siraj by Ruturaj Gaikwad, things continued to go wrong for India; Klaasen was then given to Avesh by Siraj; Bishnoi also threw Miller out on the next pitch, resulting in an over that cost Avesh 16 runs.One run short of 250, South Africa scored 54 in the final five overs.