Unruly crowd deface South Africa's thumping win
South Africa 96-4 (Duminy 30no) beat
India 92 (Raina 22) by six wickets
Second Twenty20 International, Cuttack
A thoroughly overpowering six-wicket victory over India in the second Twenty20 International in Cuttack gave South Africa an unassailable 2-0 lead in the series after the game was marred by some unruly crowd behaviour.
After losing the toss, India were put into bat by South Africa on a pitch that had plenty of cracks and an even covering of grass.
Both India and South Africa made one change each with Harbhajan Singh replacing Sreenath Aravind for the hosts and Albie Morkel taking the place of Marchant de Lange for the visitors.
Rohit Sharma (22) looked like continuing from where he left in the previous game by scoring a boundary in the very first over.
Imran Tahir (2-24) bowled the second over in the innings, conceding six runs as for the first time he opened the bowling for South Africa in T20Is.
Shikhar Dhawan (11) was dismissed in the fourth over as Chris Morris (2-16) trapped him plumb in front. A good piece of fielding from Morris saw Virat Kohli (1) being run out in the very next over.
After a couple of eventless overs, South Africa struck again as David Miller produced a deadly accurate throw to catch Sharma short of the crease.
In the ninth over, Ambati Rayudu (0) missed out on a full toss from Kagiso Rabada (1-18) leaving India at a precarious position of 45 for four.
Suresh Raina (22) began batting positively by hitting Kyle Abbott (0-21) for a couple of boundaries in the 10th over. Nevertheless, at the halfway mark, India were teetering at 58 for four.
The procession of wickets simply continued as MS Dhoni (5) edged one to AB de Villiers behind the stumps.
The hosts sank even further when Tahir accounted for Raina and Harbhajan Singh (0) off successive deliveries in the 13th over. India were 73 for seven at this stage.
Ravichandran Ashwin (11) and Axar Patel (9) tried to resurrect the innings but Morkel (3-12) came back in the 16th over to dismiss Patel and Bhuvneshwar Kumar (0).
Ashwin was the last man to fall in the 18th over when Morris sneaked one through his defences. India could only put 92 runs on the board – their second lowest T20I total.
Albie was the most successful bowler with three wickets while Morris and Tahir picked up two each. Rabada ended up with one wicket to this name.
Facing a small target of 93 runs, South Africa started their chase in a positive fashion as de Villiers (19) smashed two boundaries in the opening over.
Ashwin (3-24) pulled things back in the second over by dismissing Hashim Amla (2), who was caught at leg slip.
Faf du Plessis (16) tried to up the ante by hitting a boundary and a six in the sixth over. He played one shot too many and holed out to mid-off, giving Ashwin his second wicket. By the end of the powerplay, South Africa reached 38 for two.
In the eighth over of the match, Ashwin induced an inside edge off de Villiers which crashed into the stumps. The 28-year-old became India’s highest wicket-taker in the shortest format by going past Irfan Pathan.
After the 11th over, the match was halted by the authorities as a section of the crowd began to fling bottles onto the ground. The game finally resumed after a 20-minute interruption.
However, just after two more overs, the players went off the field once again due to crowd disturbances. The police personnel then began to evacuate the stands from where the trouble originated.
The game resumed after almost another 25 minutes.
Barring the wicket of Farhaan Behardien (11) South Africa faced no trouble in hauling down the small total thereafter.
JP Duminy (30 not out) took his team past the finish line with a handsome boundary over mid-wicket off Raina (0-12) in the 18th over.
For India, Ashwin was the most successful bowler with three wickets, while Raina was the most economical.
Morkel was named as the man of the match on his comeback for his splendid three-wicket haul.
With the series safely in the bag, South Africa will now head to the Eden Gardens in Kolkata to face India in the final T20I of the series on 8th October.
© Cricket World 2015