If it was India’s bowling that let them down in their defeat in the first T20 International in Dharamsala, it was the turn of the batsmen in the second.
In what was a meek surrender by the star-studded batting line-up, India were bundled out for 92 in just 17.2 overs in the second T20I against South Africa at the Barabati Stadium in Cuttack on Monday.
Despite two crowd interruptions, the South Africans chased the target down with ease, winning by six wickets to pocked the T20I series 2-0 and make an emphatic opening statement on this long tour.
JP Duminy, who turned the match around for the visitors in the first T20I, once again saw his team through with an unbeaten 30.
Sticking to their plan of sending India in to bat after winning the toss, South Africa would’ve least expected India to fold up for less than 100. Not with the kind of start they got, at least. Rohit Sharma, who scored a brilliant 106 in the first T20I, and Shikhar Dhawan gave the hosts a decent start, labouring to 28 in the fourth over. But once Dhawan (11) was trapped by Chris Morris, all hell broke loose.
Two balls later, Virat Kohli (one) was run out after he went for a second run, but the throw from the deep by Morris was too quick for the Indian vice-captain. Rohit was the next to go, courtesy another run out as India slumped to 43/3. It soon became 45/4 after Rayudu – almost inexplicably – missed a straight full toss to be bowled by 20-year-old Kagiso Rabada.
All hopes were on captain MS Dhoni and Suresh Raina to play the rescue act, but all they could add were 22 runs. Albie Morkel, who was playing first game of the series, had the Indian skipper caught behind. In the next over, Imran Tahir came into play, the leggie getting removing Raina (22) and Harbhajan Singh off successive deliveries to inflict further damage on the sorry Indians.
DID YOU KNOW?
This was India’s second lowest T20 score after being bowled out for 74 against Australia at the Melbourne Cricket Ground in February 2008
Angry fans throw water bottles
Angry spectators hurled water bottles into the ground after India during the second T20 International at the Barabati Stadium on Monday. As India collapsed to 92 all out, fans vented their fury by throwing water bottles from the a certain section of the ground as it continued unabated in the innings break. The crowd threw bottles even during the South African chase, twice interrupting play for a brief while. During the second interruption, the players were asked go back to the pavilion as things got a little out of control. Bottles are, incidentally, banned in most of the venues in India but an Odisha Cricket Association official the situation was different in Cuttack. The bottles did not invade the playing area and fell on the practice surface outside the fence near the dressing room. There were also repeated announcements from the OCA to pacify the spectators and the match began without any further interruption.