Top-knocks by Rassie van der Dussen and David Miller took South Africa to a seven-wicket win over India, in the first T20I of the five-match series, here at Arun Jaitley Stadium on Thursday. Van der Dussen smashed 75* off 46 balls while Miller scored 64* off 31 balls to guide Proteas to a historical run chase. Chasing 212, South Africa were off to a shaky start. The captain Temba Bavuma departed for 10 off 8 balls after being dismissed by pacer Bhubaneshwar Kumar with assistance from keeper Rishabh Pant’s safe hands in the third over of the game.
After the fall of wicket at a score of 22, Quinton De Kock and Dwaine Pretorius went for some big hits. The latter in particular looked in fine touch. However, their promising stand was cut short at the 39-run mark after Pretorius was clean bowled by pacer Harshal Patel for 29 of just 13 balls. At the end of six overs, SA stood at a shaky 61/2, with De Kock (16*) joined by Rassie van der Dussen (0*). De Kock was the next one to follow after he was dismissed by spinner Axar Patel for 22 of 18 balls, leaving the Proteas struggling at 3/81. He was caught by Ishan Kishan with deep square leg. This brought the man in-form David Miller to the crease. At the end of 10 overs, South Africa stood at 86/3 with Miller (4*) and van der Dussen (15*).
Miller looked in great touch, smashing Harshal for a four and six in the last two balls of the 12th over and Axar Patel for 4,6,6 in the final three balls for the next over. These shots eased off some pressure on the Proteas and swung things a little bit in their favour. The duo continued the carnage and brought up their respective half-centuries and brought up a 100-run partnership. They went on to smash 22 runs in the 17th and the 18th over each and turned the tide totally in the favour of the Proteas.
With only four runs left to win in the last over, van der Dussen sent the very first delivery of Chahal for a boundary and claimed a historical seven-wicket, with five balls remaining. Earlier, Ishan Kishan scored 76 runs while Shreyas Iyer scored 36 runs and guided India to 211/4 in the first innings. For South Africa, Keshav Maharaj, Anrich Nortje, Wayne Parnell, and Dwaine Pretorius scalped one wicket each.
Brief Scores: India 211/4 (Ishan Kishan 76, Shreyas Iyer 36, Wayne Parnell 1/32) against South Africa 212/3 (Rassie van der Dussen 75 David Miller 64; Axar Patel 1/40).