In the 37th match of the ICC Men’s Cricket World Cup 2023, India defeated South Africa by 243 runs at the Eden Gardens in Kolkata.
Indian skipper Rohit Sharma won the toss and opted to bat first. The home side began their innings with some fireworks courtesy of Sharma’s (40) and Shubman Gill‘s (23) quick-fire knock in the powerplay. Scoring at the strike rate of 166, which included six fours and two sixes, Hitman Sharma laid a perfect foundation for the middle order batters. While Gill failed to build on his on his start, Virat Kohli (101*) controlled the innings and amassed an incredible century. On his birthday, King Kohli gifted himself his 49th ODI century and now has equaled himself with the master blaster himself, Sachin Tendulkar. The 35-year-old batter got off to an inadequate start, but he progressively built it up and batted throughout the innings to help India reach a huge total of 326/5. Along with him, Shreyas Iyer (77) also scored an outstanding fifty. Both batters added 124 runs for the third wicket partnership which was a big boost for the Indian side. Towards the end, Suryakumar Yadav (22) and Ravindra Jadeja (29*) also played their part magnificently which helped India to add few more runs at the backend of the innings.
In the chase, South Africa got bundled for 83 runs in just 27 overs. The Proteas kept on losing wickets at regular intervals, which impeded their batting and might have even raised some misgivings in the camp as the competition progressed into the knockout stages. While Marco Jansen (14) was SA’s top scorer tonight, Rassie van der Dussen (13), David Miller (11) and skipper Temba Bavuma (11) were the only other batters to have scored in double digits.
India had another brilliant bowling show at the Eden Gardens as they once again bowled out the opponent far well before the 50th over. This time though, the hero with the ball was Jadeja as he scalped a fifer while giving away just 33 runs. Mohammad Shami and Kuldeep Yadav also got two wickets, whereas Mohammed Siraj too picked one wicket.
Birthday boy Virat Kohli was adjudged Player of the Match for his electrifying batting performance. With this win, the Men in Blue have secured the top position on the points table with one league match to go.
India: 326/5, Overs 50, Virat Kohli 101*, Keshav Maharaj 1/30
South Africa: 83/10, Overs 27.1, Marco Jansen 14, Ravindra Jadeja 5/33