When two talented strokemakers decide to put on a show for a near full-house, there isn’t much a fielding side can do. South Africa was at the receiving end of a spectacular display of batting by Ishan Kishan (93, 84b, 4x4, 7x6) and Shreyas Iyer (113 n.o., 111b, 15x4) at the JSCA Stadium on a pleasant Sunday night. Riding on their 161-run stand for the third wicket, India won the second ODI to level the three-match series. The host was set a target of 279. It was achieved with consummate ease, with 4.1 overs and seven wickets to spare. Teaser Before the Shreyas-Kishan show began, there was a teaser from opener Shubman Gill. He was looking in ominous touch when he fell to a superb, low return catch by Kagiso Rabada.
Shreyas and Kishan tore into a quality attack. Kishan, playing in front of his home crowd, went after the bowlers after getting his eye in. He was severe on the spinners and didn’t spare the quicks either — not even the express pace of Anrich Nortje, whom he smashed for successive sixes on the leg-side.
He was unlucky to find the fielder near the deep mid-wicket boundary, though, when he was seven short of a hundred. Shreyas, however, went on to complete his second ODI hundred and take India home in the company of Sanju Samson.
The South African innings was built on an attractive 129-run partnership for the third wicket between Reeza Hendricks (74, 76b, 9x4, 1x6) and Aiden Markram (79, 89b, 7x4, 1x6). They came together at the fall of Janneman Malan, who was adjudged lbw to debutant Shahbaz Ahmed after the original decision was reviewed.
Shahbaz was one of the two changes India made from the team that played the first ODI at Lucknow, the other being Washington Sundar. The two replaced Ruturaj Gaikwad and Ravi Bishnoi. South Africa effected three changes as Hendricks, Anrich Nortje and Bjorn Fortuin came in for skipper Temba Bavuma, Tabraiz Shamsi and Lungi Ngidi. Bavuma and Shamsi were unwell, the stand-in captain Keshav Maharaj said.
Siraj was the pick of the Indian bowlers.
His final spell was exceptional and it was one of the reasons why the South Africans failed to accelerate towards the end despite being set up nicely by Hendricks and Markram. Both batters paced their innings well and played some delightful strokes.
India came up with a much-improved display in the field too. Captain Shikhar Dhawan shuffled his bowlers around rather well. The visitors still managed to post a challenging score, but once Kishan and Shreyas took charge, no total was safe.
Quinton de Kock b Siraj 5 (8b, 1x4), Janneman Malan lbw b Shahbaz 25 (31b, 4x4), Reeza Hendricks c Shahbaz b Siraj 74 (76b, 9x4, 1x6), Aiden Markram c Dhawan b Washington 79 (89b, 7x4, 1x6), Heinrich Klaasen c Siraj b Kuldeep 30 (26b, 2x4, 2x6), David Miller (not out) 35 (34b, 4x4), Wayne Parnell c Shreyas b Shardul 16 (22b), Keshav Maharaj b Siraj 5 (13b), Bjorn Fortuin (not out) 0 (1b); Extras (b-4, lb-2, w-3): 9; Total (for seven wkts. in 50 overs): 278.
FALL OF WICKETS
1-7 (de Kock, 2.1 overs), 2-40 (Malan, 9.5), 3-169 (Hendricks, 31.2), 4-215 (Klaasen, 37.6), 5-215 (Markram, 38.2), 6-256 (Parnell, 46.2), 7-277 (Maharaj, 49.5).
Siraj 10-1-38-3, Washington 9-0-60-1, Shahbaz 10-0-54-1, Avesh 7-0-35-0, Kuldeep 9-0-49-1, Shardul 5-0-36-1.
Shikhar Dhawan b Parnell 13 (20b, 1x6), Shubman Gill c & b Rabada 28 (26b, 5x4), Ishan Kishan c Hendricks b Fortuin 93 (84b, 4x4, 7x6), Shreyas Iyer (not out) 113 (111b, 15x4), Sanju Samson (not out) 29 (36b, 1x4, 1x6); Extras (lb-1, w-3, nb-2): 6; Total (for three wkts. in 45.5 overs): 282.
FALL OF WICKETS
1-28 (Dhawan, 5.6), 2-48 (Gill, 8.5), 3-209 (Kishan, 34.3).
SOUTH AFRICA BOWLING
Fortuin 9-1-52-1, Parnell 8-0-43-1, Rabada 10-1-59-1, Nortje 8.5-0-60-0, Maharaj 7-0-45-0, Markram 3-0-22-0.
Toss: SA; MoM: Shreyas.
India won by seven wickets with 25 balls remaining to level the three-match series 1-1.
Third and final ODI: Oct. 11, Delhi, 1.30 p.m.