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Mithali Raj powers India to 3-1 series victory over South Africa in T20Is

Mithali Raj scored a half-century
Mithali Raj scored a half-century
©REUTERS
 

India Women 166-4 (Mithali 62) beat
South Africa Women 112 (Pandey 3-16) by 54 runs
Fifth Twenty20 International in Cape Town

Mithali Raj led with a determined 62-run knock while Shikha Pandey, Rumeli Dhar and Rajeshwari Gayakwad all shared three wickets apiece as India Women went on to beat South Africa Women by 54 runs in the fifth and final Twenty20 International in Cape Town to win the series 3-1.

Earlier, India went on to beat their South African counterparts 2-1 in the ODI series as well.

Smriti Mandhana (13) had a rare failure at the top after India were invited to bat first by South Africa. However, Mithali (62) shouldered the responsibility and shared a 98 run stand for the second wicket with Jemimah Rodrigues (44) as they laid a solid foundation to the innings.

In the process, Mithali went on to complete a 36-ball fifty as India were severe especially on Ayabonga Khaka (1-41).

Even though both the players were dismissed in a span of six deliveries, skipper Harmanpreet Kaur (27 not out) with her 17-ball blitz provided the much needed late flourish to lift the total to 166 for four in the 20 overs.

Pandey (3-16) and Dhar (3-26) were instrumental with the new ball as they blew away the South African top order and reduced them to 44 for five by the ninth over.

Only Chloe Tryon (25) and Marizanne Kapp (27) crossed the 20-run mark, as Gayakwad (3-26) too returned amongst the wickets to bowl out South Africa for 112 in 18 overs.

Mithali was named both the player of the match as well as the series.

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