IND vs SA, 3rd T20I: Hosts set 180-run target
India compiled 179/5 in ongoing third T20I against South Africa at YS Rajasekhara Reddy ACA-VDCA Cricket Stadium, Visakhapatnam. Openers Ruturaj Gaikwad and Ishan Kishan gave India a resounding start. However, the middle-order batters yet again failed to maximize. Seamers Kagiso Rabada and Wayne Parnell shone in the death overs for SA. Meanwhile, Hardik Pandya contributed with the bat in the final over.
Pacers Kagiso Rabada and Wayne Parnell kept the Indian openers quiet after SA elected to field. However, Ruturaj Gaikwad broke the shackles in the fifth over. He smashed Anrich Nortje for five consecutive fours. On the other hand, left-handed Ishan Kishan remained watchful. India did not lose any wicket in the first six overs, having scored 57.
Keshav Maharaj drew first blood for South Africa, dismissing Gaikwad in the 10th over. The Indian opener departed after smashing his maiden half-century in T20I cricket. Gaikwad hammered 57 off 35 balls (7 fours and 2 sixes). The right-handed batter along with Kishan shared a 97-run stand in 9.6 overs, the third-highest partnership for India against SA (T20Is).
Ishan Kishan accelerated after the dismissal of his opening partner Gaikwad. The former registered his fourth half-century in the shortest format. It was his second fifty of the ongoing series. Dwaine Pretorious removed Kishan in 14th over (54 off 35 balls).
Things went south for India after the dismissal of Kishan. SA bowlers kept the Indians at bay thereafter. Notably, the hosts did not score a boundary for 32 straight balls. India scored 126/1 in the first 73 balls, while they managed just 53/4 in the last 47 balls. Hardik Pandya slammed an unbeaten 31 off 21 balls (4 fours).