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India Women 177/9 (50 ov)
South Africa Women 178/2 (40.1 ov)
South Africa Women won by 8 wickets
Player of the match: Shabnim Ismail
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That would be all from this coverage of the first ODI between India and South Africa. The second ODI happens on the 9th of March. Please do join us for the coverage of that match. For the moment this is Prakhar Sachdeo, and I on behalf of Bala, Soorya, and Abhinav shall take your leave! 
A clinical performance from the visitors take them 1-0 up in the five-match ODI series. After winning the toss South African skipper Sune Luus opted to bowl first. The South African bowlers responded well to their skipper's call as they restricted India to under 200 in 50 overs. At one point in the Indian innings, when the Indian skipper Mithali Raj was batting along with Harmanpreet Kaur, it looked like the team would get a total beyond 200. But once Mithali departed on a personal score of 50 and Harmanpreet walked back after a quickfire 40, there was no support from the lower-order and the team finished on 177 in 50 overs. The stand-out bowler for South Africa was of course Shabnim Ismail as she picked three wickets. But she got good support from the likes of Marizanne Kapp, Ayabonga Khaka, Nonkululeko Mlaba, and Luus. 

A target of 178 was never going to be difficult for South Africa. The South African opening pair of Lizelle Lee and Laura Wolvaardt stitched a hundred-run partnership. In the process, Wolvaardt and Lee hit their 18th and 19th ODI fifties respectively. Their 169-run stand was also the highest partnership while chasing against India in Women's ODIs for any wicket. Veteran Indian pacer Jhulan Goswami did manage to pick two wickets but it was too little too late as South Africa romped home with 8 wickets and 9.5 overs in hand. 
Over to the presentation ceremony now.

Mithali Raj: Few of the batters did get the start but we did not convert those starts. A lot goes into game time. If we get few games before the match then that helps. We did have partnerships top of the order despite losing the openers. In bowling, Harman was good because the other spinners were struggling. Jhulan was making a comeback and it was good to see her bowl like that.

Sune Luus: It was a perfect game. Extremely proud of the girls. The way we bowled today was exceptional. I think one always needs to work on some areas. But today we are going to celebrate.  It was a world-class performance. The way batters played against the spinners was good.

Shabnim Ismail is the Player of the Match for her spell of 10-3-28-3. 

Shabnim Ismail: My performance was really good. My first couple of overs went for 10 runs but it takes experience to come back strong. It would be slightly embarrassing to talk about my performances on previous Indian tours. The way we have performed as a team and a unit has been good.  
Fist bumps from the payers and the support staff of both teams! 
A slightly anti-climatic end to the match. But a win for South Africa by 8 wickets. Great start for the visitors as they go 1 up in the series. South Africa have now won 4 ODI matches on the bounce. Earlier this year they had whitewashed Pakistan in the three-match ODI series they had played in their home. 
40.2 Harmanpreet Kaur to Lizelle Lee, oh, that's an anti-climax! Tries to toss it up wide of off-stump, but it goes past the wide-mark. And that's game, set and match!
40.1 Harmanpreet Kaur to Lizelle Lee, good length ball turning in on off and middle, defends it on the on-side
Harmanpreet to bowl. 
So Luss departs. Jhulan loves picking wickets no matter the stage of the game. She finishes her spell with the figures of 2/31. South Africa need just one more run to win. 
Over: 40 | Summary: 4 0 0 0 1 W Bowler: Jhulan Goswami Score: 177/2
39.6 Jhulan Goswami to Sune Luus, OUT! Good length ball angling in, closes the face of the bat a bit too early trying to work it away, gets the leading edge in the process and the ball lobs upto the fielder at covers
39.5 Jhulan Goswami to Lizelle Lee, good length ball on the off-stump, plays it with soft hands towards mid-on and takes a single
39.4 Jhulan Goswami to Lizelle Lee, slower ball right upto the batter, drives it straight to the fielder at mid-off
39.3 Jhulan Goswami to Lizelle Lee, length ball on the sixth stump channel, guides it late to short thirdman
39.2 Jhulan Goswami to Lizelle Lee, low full toss outside the off-stump, drives it straight to short extra cover
39.1 Jhulan Goswami to Lizelle Lee, FOUR! Length ball angling into the batter, gets behind and tucks it away past the fielder at short fineleg and the ball races away to the boundary
Three runs off the over. With South African needing only 6 more runs to win, they are only a hit away from the victory. Who will be hitting the winning runs? Lee or Luus? Or someone else?
Over: 39 | Summary: 0 1 1 1 0 0 Bowler: Harmanpreet Kaur Score: 0/0
38.6 Harmanpreet Kaur to Sune Luus, good length ball on the middle stump, stays in the crease and defends it on the on-side
38.5 Harmanpreet Kaur to Sune Luus, floated up on a good length outside the off-stump, nice stride in to defend it
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