India crashed to a heavy 135-run defeat after its batsmen found the pace and bounce off the Durban pitch too hot to handle. Chasing a stiff target of 290, India was bundled out for just 154 in 35.4 overs. Only Virat Kohli played a significant knock amongst all the batsmen with a 70-ball 54 which had 2 fours and a six. Suresh Raina came up with a 36-ball 32 cameo but the damage was done once India were reduced to 43 for 4 in the 11th over.
The big wicket early on was that of Sachin Tendulkar who got a top edge to an ambitious hook off Tsotsobe in the 4th over. Rohit Sharma and Yuvraj Singh were bounced out by Morne Morkel and with that India was out of the match. Kohli and Dhoni tried to put up some respectability but their partnership came to an end with the tragic run out of the Indian Captain at the bowling end. There was nothing that could save India and a big defeat was inevitable.
Lonwabo Tsotsobe was the most successful bowler for the hosts taking four wickets while Morkel and Steyn got two each.
South Africa Innings
South Africa had recovered from early jolts of 82 for 3 to a healthy total of 289 for 9 in the first ODI at Durban. It was courtesy of a superb 131 run-partnership for the fourth wicket between AB de Villiers (76 from 69 balls with 7 fours and a six) and JP Duminy (73 from 89 balls with a four and a six) that the hosts managed to put up a stiff target.
Hashim Amla provided a flier of a start with a 35-ball fifty but he failed to convert that into a bigger score. When he got out in the 14th over to Munaf Patel, South Africa were in trouble of wasting his breezy start. However, the pair of AB de Villiers and Duminy came good to provide the platform for the slog overs. India managed to curtail the scoring rate thanks to the part-time spinners. Rohit Sharma and Suresh Raina bowled pretty well to pull things down for the Proteas who could have so easily crossed 300. Zaheer Khan, Munaf Patel and Rohit Sharma picked up two wickets each for India.
Toss and Teams
South Africa have won the toss and elected to bat first in the opening ODI at Kingsmead in Durban. The hosts have filled up their side with four quicks and a lone spinner in Johan Botha. India have gone in with 7 specialist batsmen, three pacers and Harbhajan Singh.
The pitch is expected to have good bounce and carry with a spread of brown grass on it. Batting second will be the trick part as the ball could misbehave under the lights especially when it is brand new.
South Africa : GC Smith (C), HM Amla, CA Ingram, AB de Villiers (WK), JP Duminy, DA Miller, J Botha, WD Parnell, LL Tsotsobe, M Morkel, DW Steyn
India : SR Tendulkar, M Vijay, V Kohli, Yuvraj Singh, RG Sharma, SK Raina, MS Dhoni (C&WK), Harbhajan Singh, Z Khan, A Nehra, MM Patel
- BV Swagath