Who Said What: World reacts as South Africa remain unbeaten in Pink ODIs
South Africa kept alive their hopes of leveling the series after beating India by five wickets in the fourth ODI at Johannesburg. In a rain-curtailed encounter, the Proteas needed 202 for victory after Shikhar Dhawan's century and another fifty for Kohli helped India post 289/7 in their 50 overs.
In reply, the hosts never looked in control until they were given a couple of life lines in the form of a dropped catch and a wicket off a no ball. David Miller made the most of his chance and the rest of the middle-order held their ground as the Proteas won with five wickets and 15 balls to spare.
"Pink seems to be the perfect potion for us. Just relieved to have got over the line today. To put some pressure on the Indians is a good feeling and to win is even better. Definitely happy with the fightback; the break out there was a blessing in disguise to break up their momentum. The bowlers too were able to work out their plans in that break. To restrict them to 290 was a great job from our bowlers.
"The message before today was to put fear aside and go and express ourselves and it is nice to see boys having bought into the plan. There is enough pressure in this game and you don't want boys to put pressure on themselves.
"It is good to have some experience in our middle-order with AB coming back. He possesses a different proposition to the opposition as well. We need to keep fighting our way; we aren't still at our best yet and need to keep improving with each game with one step at a time. Would love to take pink into our big tournaments as well (laughs)."
"Unbelievable feeling; it is the best I've felt in my career so far. I was 100-percent nervous walking into the crease, my heart was beating very loudly. I have done it in the past though at the domestic level. I just want to play, doesn't matter where I bat. I was told that I would be opening, but was drafted down to number six and thank God for that. Sometimes you have to try playing innovative shots and am glad it came off tonight."
"In the second innings when the game was placed after the interval, we got a difference of 35 between runs and balls, it was almost a T20 game. We had to take our chances, no balls aren't easy. In hindsight you have to give credit to South Africa, we didn't grab our chances and they deserved to win.
After the first lightning break when Shikhar and Jinks (Rahane) came off, the guys felt that the wicket got faster and the weather got cooler and they felt that the ball wasn't coming on nicely. The ball was getting a little wet, our spinners got a bit of turn but the South African batsmen took their chances and they came off. They improvised well and they deserved to win. The game getting shorter worked in their favour; had it been a full game you never know. It was more like a T20 game and you have to go after the bowlers.
"If a side has momentum in their favour, it is very difficult to stop them. Especially guys like Miller and their keeper batted brilliantly as well. When AB got out we felt we were in the game but these two took it away from us. No balls are something that hurts you as a team and it is something we hope to rectify and not repeat them in the next games."
Here are the reactions from the cricket fraternity:
There was plenty of praise for Shikhar Dhawan.