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SOUTH AFRICA WOMEN TOUR OF INDIA 2019 NEWS
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India's spin quintet, that included the part-time off-spin of Jemimah Rodrigues, inflicted a narrow six-run loss on South Africa to sweep the three-match ODI series in Vadodara on Monday (October 14). Batting first, India could muster only 146 runs but the spinners combined to claim nine wickets and defend the lowly score for their first series whitewash in the format since the one against West Indies in 2016. Incidentally, the notorious trend of conceding the final game of the series started in South Africa in early 2018 and comes to a halt against the same opposition.
Unlike India though, it were the pace trioka of Marizanne Kapp, Shabnim Ismail and Ayabonga Khaka that did the bulk of damage to keep India to just 146. South Africa were also phenomenal in the field, in sharp contrast to how the earlier two games went for the visitors. Unfortunately, the batting couldn't match up.
Ismail and Kapp struck in their very first overs, sending back Priya Punia for her maiden ODI duck and Rodrigues for just three, respectively. Punam Raut and Mithali Raj combined to offer some resistance but found scoring difficult. Khaka opened her account by sending back Raut for 15, while Raj became Kapp's second victim after having chipped in just 11 off 46.
Harmanpreet Kaur then held one end up, but kept losing partners at the other end quite regularly. Shikha Pandey gave her company for a 49-run stand that bailed India out when they were reeling at 71 for 6 in the 30th over. The seventh-wicket partnership was the best of India's innings, before the vice-captain was bowled by Kapp in the 39th over. Pandey made the second best score of 35 off 40 deliveries, Match Prediction while Mansi Joshi's twin boundaries fetched India some bonus runs towards the end.
Despite Pandey squeezing out two maidens, the Indian pacers were tad expensive at the start. Joshi drew first blood when she took out the hard-hitting Lizelle Lee for 13. India brought spin on as early as in the eighth over and Ekta Bisht struck rightaway, taking out Trisha Chetty for 7. Mignon du Preez found a way past Bisht, hitting her for a couple of boundaries in the 12th over, but Deepti Sharma then had her caught off her bowling to lend South Africa another blow. Rajeshwari Gayakwad, too, picked up a wicket in her first over to leave the visitors reeling at 54 for 4 after 14 overs.
Skipper Sune Luus and Kapp put on some resistance, adding 40 runs for the sixth wicket stand to frustrate the Indian bowlers for more than 13 overs. However, once the duo departed - six overs apart - it was always going to be an uphill task for the relatively inexperienced tail to pull it off. South Africa needed 28 more after Kapp's dismissal off the first ball of the 37th over, but Ismail and Nondumiso Shangase only delayed the inevitable.
When Ismail fell to Harmanpreet, South Africa's last wicket pair still had to get nine more runs in 21 deliveries. But with India's all three frontline spinners bowled out, Raj resorted to the part-time offpsin of Rodrgiues, who picked up her maiden ODI wicket by dismissing Tumi Sekhukhune to bowl out the visitors for 140 for a thrilling finish to the series.
Brief scores: India 146 in 45.5 overs (Harmanpreet Kaur 38, Shikha Pandey 35; Marizanne Kapp 3-20, Shabnim Ismail 2-18) beat South Africa 140 in 48 overs (Marizanne Kapp 29, Sune Luss 24; Ekta Bisht 3-32, Rajeshwari Gayakwad 2-22) by 6 runs.
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