India ease to victory over South Africa in World Cup opener

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A bowling masterclass helped India secure victory over South Africa in their opening match of the 2019 ICC Cricket World Cup.

The Proteas have lost three games out of three and now find themselves in serious trouble at the foot of the table.

Yuzvendra Chahal, India's premier spin bowler, put up the second best figures on World Cup debut in history with 4 for 51 off 10 overs.

Virat Kohli, who lost the toss, was asked to bowl first by South African skipper Faf du Plessis and India never looked back.

The world’s number one ranked ODI bowler Jasprit Bumrah was absolutely unplayable and finished with remarkable figures of 2 for 35 off 10 overs.

SOUTH AFRICA INNINGS

SA’s openers Quinton De Kock and Hashim Amla had little to no answers for the Indian seamers.

Bumrah, who was also on his World Cup debut, quickly showed why he is the best in business.

His first victim of the day came in the form of the veteran Amla, who was undone by a sharp catch in the slips by Rohit Sharma.

Bumrah’s Mumbai teammate De Kock suffered a similar demise after chasing a wide delivery and edging it straight into the very reliable hands of Kohli.

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The Proteas' misery continued with the introduction of leg-spinners Yuzvendra Chahal & Kuldeep Yadav.

Chahal lived up to his name as India's top spin option, dominating South African's middle order dismissing de Plessis, van der Dussen & Miller.

India's all-round bowling display was straight out the top drawer.

The seamers consistently hit the perfect lines/lengths and the spinners were on another level with their flight and guile.

Faf du Plessis' side fought back from a tough start and finished with a miserly total of 227.

In the modern day game, anything under 300 is seen as a disappointing performance.

INDIA INNINGS

As well as India bowled, they could not afford to get complacent in the run chase.

Kagiso Rabada, much like Bumrah earlier in the day, ran in and hit the deck hard.

The seamer got the ball to swerve and jag, causing the Indian openers a world of trouble.

Bowling tandem with paceman Chris Morris, Shikhar Dhawan and Rohit Sharma struggled to get bat to ball, never mind scoring runs.

The build up of pressure brought its reward as Dhawan nicked off to wicketkeeper de Kock.

Enter Virat Kohli.

Considered by many as the best batsman in world cricket, carrying the hopes of over one billion people on his back.

That being said, it was anything but normal service from the supremely talented India captain as Rabada and Morris' superb bowling made it difficult for Kohli to get in his groove.

After a tentative 18 runs off 34 balls, Kohli was phenomenally caught behind by de Kock.

The Proteas keeper leapt like a salmon to his right, put out his right hand and the ball stuck. An early contender for Catch of the Tournament for sure.

Vice captain Rohit Sharma weathered the South African storm, playing with a calm hand with style and panache.

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The opener held his bat scoring a magnificent 122 not out, anchoring the Indian innings on the way to victory.

India have arrived at the 2019 World Cup... And they mean business.

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