Aiden Markram

HISTORY created! India thumped South Africa by 73 runs to seal the series

[caption id="attachment_63018" align="aligncenter" width="580"]DV72wTfXkAAEd8V Kuldeep Yadav took 4 crucial wickets for India today. Image Source: BCCI[/caption]

Internet Desk: Virat Kohli led Indian cricket team made history today on the South African soil, as they became the very first Indian side to win a series. The Men in Blue won the match by 73 runs at the St George's Park in Port Elizabeth and bagged the six match ODI series 4-1 with a game still to be played on Friday. After winning the toss the home side sent India to bat first, where the Men in Blue scored 271 for 7 in the alloted 50 overs, in reply the hosts managed to score just 201 runs before getting all-out. With this series win, Virat Kohli and Co. have cemented their place on the top of the ICC ODI rankings as well.

It was a disappointing result for the Standard Bank Proteas who had been given an excellent chance of winning the match and staying alive in the series thanks to a superb effort by their bowlers who for the second match in a row produced an excellent death bowling performance in the final 10 overs, restricting India to 55 runs for the loss of 4 wickets.

The fightback started when Tabraiz Shamsi and Andile Phehlukwayo slowed India down between the 30th and 40th overs and then Lungi Ngidi produced a career best performance to take 4/51 from 9 overs. He claimed the key wicket of Sharma and then got rid of Hardik Pandya with his next delivery. MS Dhoni denied him the chance to become the fourth South African to take a hat trick but he had the last laugh when he dismissed the Indian veteran in his final over.

The target of 275 looked very gettable but once again the Proteas struggled to put partnerships together as they lost 3 wickets for 13 runs following an opening half-century stand between Aiden Markram and Hashim Amla.

It was always going to be an uphill battle after that although Amla (71 off 92 balls, 5 fours) and Heinrich Klaasen (39 off 42 balls, 2 fours and 2 sixes) batted them back into the game until the former was needlessly run out.

Thereafter the Indian spinners had little difficulty in wrapping up the tail with Kuldeep Yadav and Yuzvendra Chahal taking five wickets between them at a cost of only 58 runs.

The one positive the Proteas can take out of the series to date is that their youngsters are growing up very quickly in the demanding arena of international cricket. Four of their five specialist bowlers went into this game with a collective total of 78 caps while Klaasen and Markram have also been making impressive strides in other areas.

There are certainly more players putting their hands up for possible World Cup selection than there were when the series started.

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