First T20I: India thrash South Africa by eight wickets

Opener KL Rahul and number four Suryakumar Yadav hit half-centuries for India



India's KL Rahul plays a shot. (AP)
India's KL Rahul plays a shot. (AP)

By AFP

Published: Wed 28 Sep 2022, 8:52 PM

India beat South Africa by eight wickets in the first of the three Twenty20 internationals on Wednesday.

Chasing a modest score of 107, India reached the target in 16.4 overs, losing only two wickets.

Opener KL Rahul (51 not out off 56 balls) and number four Suryakumar Yadav (50 not out off 33 balls) took India home comfortably after the hosts lost captain Rohit Sharma (0) and Virat Kohli (3) early.

Earlier, left-arm quick Arshdeep Singh snapped up three wickets and Deepak Chahar picked up two as India restricted South Africa to 106-8.

Arshdeep picked up 3-32, while Chahar took 2-24. Harshal finished with 2-26.

Keshav Maharaj made a defiant 41.

Earlier, India skipper Rohit Sharma won the toss and elected to field.

The hosts, fresh from beating Australia 2-1 in a three-match T20 series, made four changes to their team in Thiruvananthapuram.

Wicketkeeper Rishabh Pant and Arshdeep Singh came in for the rested Hardik Pandya and Bhuvneshwar Kumar.

Deepak Chahar and Ravichandran Ashwin made the team in place of Yuzvendra Chahal and Jasprit Bumrah, who is out due to an injury niggle.

The two teams are into their final set of matches before next month's T20 World Cup in Australia.

"Very important to continue to do what you're doing and keep that momentum in this format," Rohit said at the toss.

"Very healthy atmosphere in the group and we also want to make sure to tick all the boxes and so far we have been doing good and we just want to continue to do that."

South Africa have returned to India after their previous T20 tour finished in a frustrating 2-2 draw in June.

Captain Temba Bavuma said the matches will be a good tune-up for the World Cup.

"Good going over the last couple of months. This is an important series for us and we want to continue all the good work," said Bavuma.

"Guys always enjoy the India trip, the energy of the guys is up again and nice to be back in action after a couple of months," he added.

"Different conditions to Australia but in terms of match practice, it is a great opportunity."

Teams:

India: Rohit Sharma (C), K.L. Rahul, Virat Kohli, Suryakumar Yadav, Rishabh Pant (wk), Dinesh Karthik, Axar Patel, Ravichandran Ashwin, Harshal Patel, Deepak Chahar, Arshdeep Singh.

South Africa: Quinton de Kock (wk), Temba Bavuma (C), Rilee Rossouw, Aiden Markram, David Miller, Tristan Stubbs, Wayne Parnell, Kagiso Rabada, Keshav Maharaj, Anrich Nortje, Tabraiz Shamsi.


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