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Rediff News  All News  » Cricket » Johannesburg ODI: Munaf helps India edge South Africa by one run

Johannesburg ODI: Munaf helps India edge South Africa by one run

Last updated on: January 16, 2011 02:10 IST


India scored a breathtaking one-run win over South Africa in a low-scoring second One Day International in Johannesburg on Saturday.

The home side made heavy weather of what seemed like a modest chase to be all out for 189 in 43 overs. In what seemed like a batting wicket, it was the bowlers who did the job for the both the sides, their batsmen only flattering to deceive.

The win squared the five-match series at 1-1, the hosts having won the opening ODI at Durban comprehensively.

Captain Graeme Smith was the highest scorer for South Africa with a well-made 77 while Munaf Patel was India's most successful bowler with figures of four for 29, including that of Smith.

Munaf PatelMunaf was awarded the man-of-the-match award for his effort.

If the Indian batsmen were disappointing in the first session, having won what seemed a good toss, their South African counterparts were no better.

In fact, it seemed all over for the visitors when the hosts were cruising along at 152 for four in the 33rd over. Then South Africa did what they are famous (rather infamous) for.

They choked, making what seemed a modest total an impossible task. They lost their last six wickets for just 37 runs, when 39 was all that was required.

The third match of the series will be played at Cape Town on Tuesday.

Earlier, India won the toss and expectedly elected to bat.

"There's something for the bowlers early on but we are looking to put a total of around 270," said MS Dhoni.

His South African counterpart, Graeme Smith had his own viewpoint.

"The weather might come into play. Hopefully the bowlers can produce a effort like the last evening," he hoped.

No changes was made to the composition of either team. 

India innings:

Earlier, the Indian batsmen put up a disastrous show. Or maybe the South African bowling was just too good.

The visitors were bowled out for just 190, failing to bat their full quota of overs (47.2 overs).

Yuvraj Singh top-score for India with a resolute 53 while Lonwobe Tsotsobe was the most successful bowler for South Africa with figures of four for 22.

Dale Steyn and Morne Morkel picked up two wickets apiece as the Indian batting again lay exposed in the face of some accurate seam bowling.

Besides the 83-run fourth wicket stand between Yuvraj and captain MS Dhoni (38), there was nothing much to brag about the Indian batting.

All seemed well for India at the start though.

Murali Vijay (16) began confidently, getting boundaries off Steyn and Tsotsobe in the opening two overs.

However, Sachin Tendulkar (24), playing in his 444th ODI, took 10 balls to get off the mark. He also survived a run out attempt during the period when Hashim Amla missed the stumps.

Tendulkar celebrated the reprieve with a boundary off Steyn. However, Tsotsobe soon provided South Africa with their maiden breakthrough, having Vijay caught by Morkel at mid-on.

It was slow progress for India from then on.

Tendulkar and Virat Kohli (22) put on 42 runs for the second wicket before that latter was run out from a Colin Miller direct hit. 

The Master Blaster didn't survive for long either, Botha cleaning him up in the very next over. Tendulkar, looking uncomfortable through his stay, made a painstaking 44-ball 24.

Yuvraj Singh (53) and MS Dhoni (38) tried doing the repair work. However, the fact that the visitors were struggling at 67 for three, meant both had to curb their natural instincts.

The duo though settled down well, combining caution and aggression to good effect, to give the Indian innings the stability it so desperately required.

A boundary over backward point (off Morkel) help Yuvraj reach 49. Another off Tsotsobe, towards fine-leg, helped the left-hander to register his 46th ODI fifty, his fourth against South Africa.

However, instead of capitalising on the knock, Yuvraj put India on the spot again, getting dismissed in the very next ball - Tsotsobe having him caught by Steyn at mid-off.

Yuvraj's 68-ball knock was inclusive of four hits to the fence and his fourth-wicket partnership with his captain yielded India 83 runs.

However, with the fall of his wicket started a slide for India. Suresh Raina (11) didn't survive for long, getting trapped in front by Tsotsobe.

Dhoni's resistance too ended when he was cleaned up by Tsotsobe, giving the latter his fourth wicket. The Indian captain's 61-ball stay at the crease included just one hit to the fence.

Morkel had Harbhajan (3) caught by Miller at midwicket and Tsotsobe took a spectacular catch at third man (off Steyn's bowling) to send Zaheer Khan (0) back to the pavilion.

When Morkel trapped Rohit Sharma (9) leg before it meant just 14 runs came off the batting powerplay for India at the cost of four wickets.

And when Nehra (1) was caught at mid-off by Botha (off Steyn), it was curtains for the visitors.

South Africa innings:

If the Indian batting had been bad, that of the home side was worse. Again credit here has to be given to the Indian bowlers for making such a great comeback.

The South African innings began on a disastrous note, with Munaf Patel having Hashim Amla (4) caught behind. Captain Graeme Smith and Colin Ingram (25) added 59 runs for the second wicket to ensure the impact of the early loss was minimised.

However, that proved to be the only partnership of note in the South African innings as the other batsmen paid the price for being impatient.

AB de Villiers (8) and JP Duminy (13) fell cheap and when Smith with the score on 152, began a slump for the home side.

The South African captain's 98-ball knock was inclusive of eight hits to the fence.

However, his dismissal witnessed South Africa slump from 152 for four to 177 for eight in the 39th over. Of the wickets to fall was that of the well settled David Miller (29).

And it seemed to be a lost cause.

Morne Morkel (6) and Wayne Parnell (12) seemed to put things in order and take them to a win. However, there was a twist in the tale again.

With just three runs required, Morkel hit a Munaf delivery straight to Yusuf Pathan at point to give India a ray of hope and put this team under pressure.

And when Parnell hit the last ball of the same over to Yuvraj at point, it was all over.