South Africa vs India 2018, 2nd T20I: Who said what after the hosts pounded India in Centurion
South Africa found an ally back in the fourth ODI in the form of rain and a slippery outfield and they once again joined hands with forces of nature to complete an exhilarating win against India in the second T20I and locked the series 1-1 going into the decider at Newlands.
JP Duminy won the toss and invited India to bat owing to the imminent rain and after a jittery start, the visitors found two crucial partnerships between Manish Pandey and Suresh Raina and then Manish Pandey and MS Dhoni.
Half-centuries from Dhoni and Pandey and some late flourish by the duo in the end over propelled India to 188 in their allotted 20 overs.
Manish Pandey was especially impressive as he paced his innings perfectly and Dhoni on the other end unfurled his strokes towards the end to press the accelerator and propel the final score to a formidable 188.
South Africa were not entirely bright with their start either, but the promotion to Henrich Klaasen shifted all the momentum towards them as the wicket-keeper launched into the Indian bowling attack and took them to the cleaners with a blitzkrieg 69 off 30 balls.
He was ably assisted by JP Duminy and then Farhaan Behardien ensured that the hosts were well ahead of the game when the captain put his foot down, dropped the knee and creamed two sixes to seal the deal for his side by six wickets in the 19th over.
It was a forgettable day for Yuzvendra Chahal who was brought to his knees as his four overs were peeled off for 64 runs. He struggled to obtain any control over the wet and slippery ball and this was exploded in his face.
The action now shifts to Newlands, where this tour began for Virat Kohli and his band of boys with the series on the line.
It ain't scripted, but it all adds up!
Here is how the players responsible reacted:
Virat Kohli, India captain: Tough one for the bowlers. Manish and Raina batted well initially. Manish and MS were outstanding to get to 190. It was tough in the drizzle. Credit to the SA batsmen. They were very positive. Good from a spectator point of view. You don't want the play to be stopped. You don't mind these things. We didn't have problems with that. There was a constant drizzle, wasn't too drastic at any stage. With the drizzle, the wicket settled down. The ball was difficult to grip too. They took calculated risks. They targetted the short boundary and it came off for them. They showed the passion which is needed to win games of cricket. We expect them to show a fight and show some heart and they deserved to win tonight.
Henrich Klaasen, the man of the match: Pretty special, especially at my home ground. It's what you dream of as a young kid. Didn't get such a surface last season with the Titans franchise. You've got to put the bowler under pressure. If you're a one-dimensional player, these guys will figure you out (about his sweeps). Comfortable with where my game is at the moment. Enjoying my cricket for the last year and a half.
JP Duminy, South Africa captain: At the toss we spoke about this being a S/F. Way we started with the ball was exceptional. They gained momentum with the last five overs but our batsmen showed composure. Pretty easy win in the end. We tried our utmost to keep with the DLS system. In the end, it worked in our favour because it gave us the freedom. It was raining a bit in our bowling innings as well. We knew we had to set the tone with a good first over. They came at us a bit but it was key to pick wickets in the powerplay. To take down 189 was a pretty good effort. Certainly will be a good crowd for Cape Town. Hopefully we can put up a good spectacle.