- India beat South Africa by 6 wickets in their World Cup match on Wednesday
- The Proteas struggled to contend with India’s bowling attack and posted a meagre target of 227
- India had a few minor scares early on, but eased to victory in the end on the back of a Rohit Sharma ton
It’s fast turning into a cricket world cup to forget for South Africa.
The Proteas were comprehensively beaten by England in their opening encounter, then humbled by Bangladesh on Sunday.
Despite the need for a victory, many a South African batsman looked like a deer in the headlights against the Indian bowling attack.
Perhaps the team was still frazzled from their two previous defeats as they headed into the contest on the back foot.
Despite the pitch and conditions favouring the seamers, SA opted to play two spin bowlers and batted first.
It seemed the Indians couldn’t believe their luck and Jasprit Bumrah soon made them pay.
After beating the bat on numerous occasions in his opening spell, Bumrah eventually dismissed Hashim Amla.
He followed this up with the wicket of Quinton De Kock, which left the Proteas reeling on 24 for two.
SA consolidated until India’s spin twins joined the attack and wreaked havoc.
Leg spinner, Yuzvendra Chahal, bamboozled the middle order and finished with figures of four for 51.
Captain Faff Du Plessis chipped in with 38 and Chris Morris smashed a quickfire 42 towards the end, but it could only propel the Proteas to a mediocre 227 after their allotted overs.
The SA opening bowlers offered the team a semblance of hope with a fiery burst.
Morris gave nothing away and Kagiso Rabada had the beating of the Indian batsmen on numerous occasions.
Rabada was rewarded for his pace and swing as he snared Shikhar Dhawan for eight runs.
The Proteas sniffed blood and Sharma and Kohli both seemed uncomfortable.
However, Sharma eventually counter-attacked and struck a six and four in the same over.
Kohli then lost his wicket for 18 as he tried to cut a wide ball from Phehlukwayo.
De Kock pulled off an acrobatic catch behind the stumps.
Rabada took a break, but removed KL Rahul upon his return, with a ball that seemed to stop in the pitch.
The young fast bowler should have had a third as he undid Sharma late in the day, but David Miller dropped a sitter.
The miss summed up the day for South Africa and India soon cruised to the finishing line.
After weathering the early storm, Sharma was rewarded with a gritty ton as he carried his bat to the end.
Dhoni was dismissed towards the end, but India finished on 213 – 4.
Briefly.co.za understands that the Proteas would most likely need to win their remaining matches to qualify for the play-offs.
They face the West Indies next on Sunday.
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