India stand-in skipper KL Rahul lavished praise on Deepak Chahar, saying the young all-rounder gave his side a chance to win the third ODI against South Africa, and in the end, it is “disappointing to finish on the losing side”.
Chahar’s fighting fifty (54 off 34 balls) went in vain as the hosts beat India by four runs in the third and final ODI to complete a 3-0 whitewash in the three-match series, here on Sunday.
“Deepak gave us a real chance. Quite an exciting game, disappointing that we ended up on the losing side. It’s quite obvious where we’ve gone wrong and it’s for everyone to see, our shot selection has been really poor as batsmen. Even as bowlers we weren’t hitting the good areas consistently. We didn’t pressure the opposition for long periods so we ended up losing the series,” a dejected-looking KL Rahul said after the match.
“We need to recognise now how we can get better. What has always stood out for us is the energy and the passion, and the skill and understanding of the game. These kinds of mistakes will keep happening, but it is important we learn and don’t keep repeating the mistakes.
“In the ODIs, we repeated some of the mistakes. We need to look at ourselves in the mirror and have some hard conversations. We’ve had a great time in South Africa, we were looked after really well, thanks to CSA. We had an exciting series, we showed a lot of fight, in patches. We’ll go back with learnings and memories, and get better for sure,” he added.
Earlier, a fantastic century by Quinton de Kock (124 off 130) helped South Africa post a challenging 287 in 49.5 overs. Apart from de Kock, Rassie van der Dussen (52 off 59) and David Miller (39 off 38) also played vital knocks for the Proteas.
Prasidh Krishna (3/59), Jasprit Bumrah (2/52), Deepak Chahar (2/53), and Yuzvendra Chahal (1/47) were the wicket-takers for India.