India were missing the services of captain Virat Kohli in the third and final T20I but the team managed to pull off a convincing win even without their talisman and clinched the series 2-1 against South Africa on Sunday.Stand-in skipper Rohit Sharma was bang on with his bowling changes and field placements while the team performed like a well-oiled machine to win the match by 7 runs at Cape Town.This is the first time India has registered two series wins on a single tour in South Africa. Kohli had lead the Men in Blue to 5-1 victory in the 6-match ODI series earlier this month.India posted 172 for 7 after being put into bat with Shikhar Dhawan (47) and Suresh Raina (43) top-scoring for the team. The bowlers then restricted the Proteas to 165 for 6 with Bhuvneshwar Kumar picking up 2 wickets while Hardik Pandya, Jasprit Bumrah, Suresh Raina and Shardul Thakur got a wicket each.Rohit, who became the first Indian and sixth overall among Asians to win the first four T20Is as captain, lauded the bowlers after India’s historic series win.”To be honest, I thought we were 15 runs short. How the first half went, I thought we lost our way towards the end. I mean these things happen and we learn from it. It was a decent score and once again, the bowlers did it for us.”We discussed certain plans and it worked. We tried to keep the ball on the stumps. Their batsmen like width. So it made them go after the bowling after 6 overs. It was a complete bowling unit performance,” Rohit said at the post-match presentation.advertisementFor the home side, captain JP Duminy top-scored with 53 while Christiaan Jonker made a quickfire 49 off 24 balls but the target proved to be just too much for them.”Throughout the series, we showed a lot of intensity, which helped us get those crucial wins. We never backed down from whatever situation we were thrown in,” Rohit added.Raina was adjudged Man of the Match for his performance with the bat while Bhuvneshwar was named Man of the Series for picking up 7 wickets in 3 matches.Rohit’s counterpart Duminy rued the fact that his team just couldn’t keep up with the required run rate and kept on losing wickets.”They bowled pretty well in the batting PP. We couldn’t get the boundaries and the singles. We were 30 runs behind after that PP but in the end we were behind by only 7 runs. Their slower and knuckle balls worked. Jonker, in his first game, to get us that close was a great effort.”In this format, guys get opportunity and they try and stake a claim. Great opportunity for guys to step up. We have learnt our lessons. Full credit to India. Outstanding white-ball tour. They gained a lot of confidence out of that win in the third Test,” Duminy said.
India vs South Africa: Rohit lauds ‘complete bowling performance’ after series win