South Africa wicketkeeper-batsman Heinrich Klaasen hammered a 27-ball 43 to not only help the Proteas stun India by five wickets via the Duckworth-Lewis-Stern method in the fourth ODI in Johannesburg, but also reduce the series deficit to 3-1. However, the Indian cricket team skipper sailed past yet another landmark as he went past Mohammad Azharuddin (9378 runs) to join the top five list of Indian run-getters in ODIs. On the other hand, South Africa will be boosted with the comeback of their star player AB de Villiers into the side.
India captain Virat Kohli, however, rued his team's misfortune but admitted that South Africa were the deserving winners as they showed a lot of character. Rahane chipped in with a handy 79 in the first ODI, but the rest lower than him only received a chance to bat in the last match, and as predicted, they failed to get going all of a sudden after not getting any match practice in the ODIs.
India had a first-ever bilateral series win against South Africa in South Africa in their grasp, only for it to be snatched away - for now at least.
Ravichandran Ashwin and Ravendra Jadeja, in 2015, and then Moeen Ali, who bowled with superb rhythm and with great flight in England a year ago, have been the spinners who most recently in the Test arena have dominated the Proteas batsmen.
In reply, South Africa lost experienced opener Lizelle Lee early in the chase. The Times of India has reported that India has now taken an unassailable 3-0 lead in the six-match series.
Speaking at the post-match media conference, Dhawan said: "The main reason (for the loss) was, of course, the dropped catch and then a wicket off no-ball". The wrist spin duo have accounted for 21 out of the 30 South African wickets to fall, which tells an entire story of the way they have bowled over the first three ODIs of the series.
It is a comment on SA's uncertainties in their one-day series against India that the return of AB de Villiers to the fold is not unqualified good news. Markram and Duminy presented a glimmer of hope after the latter reached his half century, but both of them and Klassen fell in a space of 5 overs. Kohli stuck to Chahal for the next over, and the first three balls promptly disappeared for 14 runs. "You never know what happens in the future but I am really happy at the moment", he added. These two spinners won three games for us. The two sides will next play the fifth match at St George's Park in Port Elizabeth on February 13. A break in play of about an hour, due to lightning in the vicinity, heralded a big momentum shift in the game. They lost all wickets and scored only 286 runs.
It's always wonderful to see a cause get support in sport. Also, we feel they might be tempted to play 4 seamers given the wicket.
"You have to take your chances in this game", said Kohli after Miller was granted extra chances.
Just as South Africa seemed to be struggling, Miller and Klaasen stabilised the innings with a 72-run partnership before Miller was given out lbw off the bowling of Yuzvendra Chahal for a 28-ball 39.