Memorable Batting Performances – Team India is preparing to host South Africa in a five-match T20I series from June 9 to June 19. The series will begin with the first match at Delhi’s Arun Jaitley Stadium and conclude with the final game at Bengaluru’s M.Chinnaswamy Stadium.
KL Rahul will lead the Men in Blue in the T20I series against the Proteas, with regular skipper Rohit Sharma rested. Apart from Rohit, senior batsman Virat Kohli and experienced pacers Mohammad Shami and Jasprit Bumrah have been rested.
Meanwhile, veteran keeper-batter Dinesh Karthik and all-rounder Hardik Pandya have earned a recall to the Indian team based on their performances in the IPL 2022.
When Team India’s batsmen outperformed in T20Is against South Africa
To date, India and South Africa have played 15 T20Is, with Team India winning nine and the Proteas six. As the series approaches, let’s take a look back at three memorable batting performances by Team India players against the South Africans.
October 2015 – Rohit Sharma (106 off 66 in Dharamsala)
After South Africa sent Team India into bat in the first T20I of the three-match series in Dharamsala, Rohit Sharma smashed 106 off 66 balls. As India posted an impressive 199 for five, the opener smashed 12 fours and five sixes. Following the loss of Shikhar Dhawan for three runs, Rohit and Kohli (43 off 27) added 138 runs for the second wicket.
After a sluggish start, Rohit smacked Chris Morris for a four and a six in the sixth over to help Team India finish the powerplay at 46 for one. He hit Kyle Abbott past third man for four to bring up his half-century in 39 balls. In the 13th over, Rohit hit two sixes off Kagiso Rabada as Team India began to increase their run rate.
Rohit completed his century in style in the 15th over. After hitting Marchant de Lange for four to the long leg boundary, he smashed the next ball over long-off for a six to complete his maiden T20I century. The brilliant knock by Team India’s opener was in vain, as JP Duminy’s unbeaten 68 off 34 helped South Africa chase down 200 with seven wickets in hand.
T20 World Cup – Suresh Raina (101 off 60 in Gros Islet, May 2010)
The former Team India batter Suresh Raina smashed 101 off 60 balls against the Proteas in the fifth match of the 2010 T20 World Cup in Gros Islet. After losing the toss and being sent into bat, the Men in Blue lost Murali Vijay for a duck in the first over. Dinesh Karthik, the other opener, was also dismissed for 16 runs. Raina and fellow southpaw Yuvraj Singh (37 off 30) resurrected the Indian innings with an 88-run third-wicket stand.
Raina narrowly avoided being caught off Morne Morkel in the fifth over. However, the bowler went too far. In the first half of his inning, the left-hander was patient. With a single off Dale Steyn, he reached fifty off 42 balls. Raina broke through in the final five overs. Rory Kleinveldt bowled the 16th over, and he hit two sixes. Raina slammed the pacer for three fours and a six off consecutive deliveries when he returned for the 18th over.
The aggressive left-hander reached 100 by slapping Albie Morkel over the midwicket boundary for a six. He ended up hitting nine fours and five sixes in a brilliant knock that helped India reach 186 for five. Despite Jacques Kallis’ 73, the Proteas only managed 172 for five points.
T20 World Cup 2nd semi-final – Virat Kohli (72* off 44 Mirpur, April 2014)
Virat Kohli batted brilliantly to lead India to victory in the 2014 T20 World Cup semi-final against South Africa in Mirpur. Team India lost Rohit for 24 off 13 while chasing a difficult 173 to qualify for the final. Kohli (72 off 44), with assistance from Ajinkya Rahane (32 off 30) and Raina (21 off 10), led the Men in Blue to victory with six wickets in hand.
At the halfway point of India’s chase, Kohli was on 17 off 16. The 11th over began with him charging down the track and lofting Duminy over long-on for a six. He celebrated his half-century by whacking Imran Tahir for a six over deep midwicket. Kohli’s boundaries kept expanding after that.
He also hit the winning four off the first ball of the 20th over, flicking Steyn past midwicket. The No. 3 batter hit five fours and two sixes in total. Kohli’s brilliance rendered Proteas skipper Faf du Plessis’ (58 off 41) half-century in vain.