The second string India line-up trounced Zimbabwe in the second ODI at the Harare Sports Club to give Indian skipper MS Dhoni his first ODI series win since October 2014. Captain Marvel has had a torrid time the last couple of years losing ODI series to Bangladesh, Australia, South Africa and the tri-series Down Under.
Dhoni who is India’s most successful ODI captain will not be too impressed with a series win over Zimbabwe but will be happy that the lean patch has finally been broken. Zimbabwe opening their innings on a negative note as Sean Williams was ruled out due to a finger injury.
The Zimbabweans put together a strong partnership for the fourth wicket as V Sibanda and C Chibhabha put together 69 runs and gave the side a strong platform to kick-on. However the batting line-up collapsed as they lost 6 wickets for just 20 runs to set India a modest target of 127 to win.
One of the reasons for the collapse was due to some great bowling by the 25 year old leg spinner Y Chahal. The leggie sent down 6 overs for 25 runs and captured 3 wickets. His performance will be a great boost for the Indian team as Dhoni has not been very confident of R Ashwin and will now be able to experiment with Chahal should he choose to do so.
The Indians made quick work of the small total with the two openers making a half century stand. A Rayudu once again played a well compiled knock scoring 41 of just 48 balls and helped take India home. However it was Chahal who received the man of the match award for his impressive performance with the ball.
In a statement, MS Dhoni said “Our bowlers did a great job to restrict them, I felt they would cross 200 and our spinners got us important breakthroughs. Most important thing is to win games and our batting when it comes to professionalism is right up there, even in the first game.”
Dhoni has said that he will look to work with interim coach Sanjay Bangar to see if any changes can be made so that the other players in the squad get a chance to play. Dhoni is known for not being in favour of changing a winning combination and he will want to wrap up the series with a 3-0 victory.