Miller and Van der Dussen blitz India


David Miller and Rassie van der Dussen smashed blistering half-centuries to lead South Africa to a thrilling seven-wicket win over India in the first Twenty20 International on Thursday.

Chasing 212 for victory, South Africa’s top order wobbled but Miller and Van der Dussen plundered 131 runs from around 10 overs in an unbroken fourth-wicket stand to secure victory with five balls remaining.

Van der Dussen made 75 not out off 46 balls, which included five sixes.

Miller’s unbeaten 64 off 31 balls also contained five sixes as South Africa pulled off their biggest successful chase in T20 cricket.

The defeat ended India’s 12-match winning streak in this format.

Earlier, Ishan Kishan smashed 76 off 48 balls to set the tone for India who posted a strong 211-4 after being put into bat. Kishan forged half-century partnerships with Ruturaj Gaikwad (23) and Shreyas Iyer (36) as the hosts cruised to 102-1 at the halfway stage of their innings.

Keshav Maharaj ended Kishan’s blitz after conceding two sixes and two fours in an eventful 13th over.

Kishan’s 80-run partnership with Iyer came at a rate of two-runs-a-ball and India did not take their foot off the pedal.

Skipper Rishabh Pant made 29 and vice-captain Hardik Pandya smashed 31 not out off 12 balls as they comfortably passed the 200-mark.

South Africa lost skipper Temba Bavuma and Dwaine Pretorius (29) inside the first six overs. But Miller and van der Dussen put South Africa’s chase back on track with scintillating power-hitting to deny the hosts.

India have rested several frontline players, including regular captain Rohit Sharma and stalwart Virat Kohli.

KL Rahul, who was to lead the side in Rohit’s absence, will miss the series due to a groin injury and Pant is filling in as captain.

 The second game in the five-match series is in Cuttack on Sunday.

Brief scores:

India: 211/4 (20) (Ishan Kishan 76, Hardik Pandya 31*; Wayne Parnell 1-32)

South Africa: 212/3 (19.1) (Rassie van der Dussen 75*, David Miller 64*; Axar Patel 1-40)