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PHOTOS: How India demolished South Africa in Durban

February 02, 2018 11:02 IST
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South Africa's batsmen were strangled by India’s wrist spinners, slumping to 134-5, with Kuldeep Yadav the pick of the bunch.

Record 189–run third-wicket partnership between Virat Kohli (112) and Ajinkya Rahane (79) set up India's victory.

Virat Kohli

IMAGE: India’s captain Virat Kohli plays a shot on way to his hundred in the first ODI against South Africa in Durban on Thursday. Photograph: Rogan Ward/Reuters

Captain Virat Kohli struck a stylish century to lead India to a comfortable six-wicket victory over South Africa in the first One-Day International in Durban on Thursday and end the hosts' 17-match winning streak on home soil.

India amassed 270-4 to reach their target with 27 balls to spare at Kingsmead after South Africa captain Faf du Plessis, who won the toss, scored 120 of his side’s 269-8.

A record 189–run third-wicket partnership between Kohli, who made 112, and Ajinkya Rahane (79) set up India's victory at the start of the six-match series.

IMAGE: India's wicketkeeper Mahendra Singh Dhoni watches as South Africa's J P Duminy is bowled by Kuldeep Yadav (not in pic).  Photograph: Rogan Ward/Reuters

Kohli reached his 33rd ODI ton off 105 balls while Rahane’s flamboyant knock came off 86 balls.

Their partnership was the highest for the third wicket in an ODI at the Durban venue, beating a two decade-old mark held by Pakistan, and ensured India eased to victory with wickets and overs to spare.

Du Plessis carried his side as his team mates were strangled by India’s wrist spinners, slumping to 134-5 with Kuldeep Yadav the pick of the bunch as he finished with figures of 3-34 in an economical 10-over spell.

IMAGE: India spinner Kuldeep Yadav, Mahendra Singh Dhoni and Ajinkya Rahane celebrate the dismissal of South Africa's J P Duminy. Photograph: Rogan Ward/Reuters

Together with Chris Morris (37), Du Plessis piled on late runs to take South Africa to a better than expected total, and hand a sell-out crowd hope but still significantly short of a defendable target.

India have won eight of their previous nine ODIs chasing down a target and Kohli felt his side always in with a chance of doing so again.

“It was a special knock for me because the first game of a series is always important. When we restricted South Africa we knew we needed one partnership to effectively take us home,” Kohli said at the presentation ceremony.

The second game of the series is at Centurion in Pretoria on Sunday.

South Africa top the International Cricket Council’s ODI team rankings with India second.

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