Who said what: World reacts to India's series win against South Africa
India beat South Africa by 73 runs in the fifth ODI at the St. George's Park in Port Elizabeth. With this win, India have won the six-match ODI series 4-1 with the last match to be played in Centurion on February 16.
Chasing 275 to win, South Africa lost three quick wickets even before the spinners started operating simultaneously. Hardik Pandya was the wrecker-in-chief as he dismissed JP Duminy and AB de Villiers in two consecutive overs and put India in front.
David Miller and Hashim Amla played with caution against the spinners before the former was castled when he tried to increase the scoring rate. When Hashim Amla was run out for 71, it was curtains for South Africa. Eventually, the hosts were bundled out for just 201 with Kuldeep Yadav accounting for four wickets while Hardik Pandya and Yuzvendra Chahal took two wickets apiece.
Earlier in the day, India managed to post 274/7 on the board after they looked good to get in excess of 320. Rohit Sharma, who had a disastrous outing in the first four matches, scored a splendid 115 to guide India to a decent position. Yet again, the Indian middle order and the lower middle order failed to come to the party as they managed just 55 runs for the loss of four wickets in the last 10 overs.
This is how the cricket world reacted to India's historic win.
South African captain Aiden Markram: Credit to the Indians they played well today. Our batting wasn't up to scratch, and it is hard to keep up when you lose wickets in clumps. Quality Indian players in good form so credit to them, they nailed the execution of their plans. Lungi started off well and kept taking wickets in the middle. After restricting them to less than they would have liked And we were happy to chase it and we needed a few good partnerships, but that wasn't the case. We are going to have to find a way to build partnerships just to gain some momentum and build some pressure on them. They've bowled well, and they have done well (the Indian spinners). A lot of pride to play for and we will look to bounce back and end the ODI series on a positive note at Centurion.
Rohit Sharma, Man of the Match: Long time coming. I had a good time in the middle; as the game went on the wicket got slower and slower. Always a good feeling when you score a hundred and your team wins the match. We stuck to our plans and am glad it came off. I try to keep myself in the right frame of mind and it paid off. I knew I didn't have to change a lot and the runs would come. I kept hitting the ball well and the confidence was there that I would score. We were in a spot of bother when I got to my century and that's why the celebrations were low key. When you get in you've got to make it count and unless you play a bad shot you don't really get out. The rest of guys put in the runs in the last game and it was my day today.
Indian captain Virat Kohli: Very pleased. Another convincing win for us and I thought the guys really got stuck in, with the bat, with the ball and on the field as well. Only one team has the pressure of losing the series right from the start and that was South Africa. Right from the third Test in Joburg, it has been a great time for us. It has been a collective effort from the team-mates, the support staff and everybody. Every now and then you get an opportunity you might not click, and when this series is wrapped up we'll look to think about what we can do to improve. 4-1 seems great at the moment and we'll look to wrap it up well. We want to win 5-1 for sure, that doesn't change, but there'll be a chance for others to step in as well. The first priority is to win and that is what we'll look to do.