South Africa kept the series alive with a win in the fourth ODI but Ed Hawkins can't back the hosts at the odds in the fifth game in Port Elizabeth on Tuesday.
Indian captain Virat Kohli lamented two crucial errors which effectively cost his team a chance of wrapping up the series in the fourth one-day global against South Africa at the Wanderers Stadium on Saturday. In the 4th ODI, the Proteas continued their winning streak in pink jersey by thrashing India by 5 wickets. We needed wickets, because the wicket was such and the ground was wet, so by stopping runs we couldn't have won.
India must brush the loss aside and look to wrap the series up. Yet, a rain-truncated innings is hardly enough evidence that South Africa have learnt how to contend with the wrist spin of Yuzvendra Chahal and Kuldeep Yadav. And yet, with their talisman AB de Villiers gone with the game in the balance, South Africa were back to square one: shaky middle order against India's wristspinners.
"It was a left-hander for left-hander thing‚ so when David Miller got out‚ I had to go in and keep the combination going. At the same time we don't want to really look too forward".
Addressing the press on the eve of the match, the southpaw batsman said, "We have a good momentum now from the last game we played". India Skipper Virat Kohli congratulated the hosts on their first win, but lamented the unforced errors made by his team on the field.
South Africa: Aiden Markram (capt), Hashim Amla, JP Duminy, Imran Tahir, David Miller, Morne Morkel, Chris Morris, Lungisani Ngidi, Andile Phehlukwayo, Kagiso Rabada, Tabraiz Shamsi, Khayelihle Zondo, Farhaan Behardien, Heinrich Klaasen (wk), AB de Villiers. "Definitely we'll take that into consideration", said R Sridhar, India's fielding coach.
The wicketkeeper-batsman Heinrich Klaasen, who remained unbeaten on 43 off 27 balls, was handed the player of the match award. So, they too lead of the series. Later another rain break meant 113 minutes were lost during South Africa's innings and the match was reduced to 28 overs with 202 being set as the revised target. Rohit Sharma has had woeful returns so far in the series, and he's due a big one. He stitched a 158-run stand for the second wicket with captain Virat Kohli (75). "But we did a lot of homework on him over the last two-three days and that seemed to work today".
"It was a game plan we had in our change room to be really positive and look to score against them".
"We have obviously been training really hard". When one of them go wrong in a particular, the result goes against them.
"We have been doing good analysis and have good game plans".
Having been bamboozled by Yuzvendra Chahal, pictured, and Kuldeep Yadav in the first half of the ODI series with India, it's understandable that South Africa's players will start to feel better about themselves following Saturday night's win as they seek to come back in the series. However, he hasn't been able to replicate that form so far in this series.