Johannesburg: South Africa won the one-off Twenty20 at The Wanderers by 11 runs, with the result settled in anticlimactic manner by the Duckworth-Lews method. Rain interrupted play five deliveries into the eighth over of India's spirited attempt to chase a target of 220 – the result of a stunning assault from Jacques Kallis and Colin Ingram - at which time the visitors were well set on 71 for 0 but 11 runs behind mathematically. In that context, Robin Uthappa's unbeaten 18 off 19 balls, alongside Gautam Gambhir’s 49 not out from 28 balls, was made to look rather disappointing in the end result.
After the bowlers allowed South Africa to rattle up a huge total, India's run-chase needed something spectacular from the start and Gambhir delivered a strong innings. After a seven-run opening over from Lonwabo Tsotsobe, Gambhir tucked into the friendlier pace of Albie Morkel, slamming two fours and a six – a thick top edge over third man – in three successive deliveries. Two more boundaries to Gambhir off Juan Theron took India’s score to 40 after four overs, at which stage Uthappa – making a return to the national team – had faced eight deliveries for seven runs.
The next two overs produced just 11 runs as India slowed down, and it was here that South Africa can claim to have edged ahead. Uthappa’s first boundary came off his 16th ball, as the skies turned ugly overhead and the lightning began to clap. After seven overs India were 61 for 0, four runs behind where South Africa had been at the same stage.
Consecutive boundaries to Gambhir off Wayne Parnell were followed by a single off the fifth ball of the eighth over, when the rain arrived. After roughly 45 minutes, the match was called off with India deemed to have been 11 runs short of where they should have been.
That India had been left to chase 220 owed largely to the attack that Kallis (61) and Ingram (78) launched against their bowling, which included as many as eight men who rolled their arms over. Asked to bat first on an excellent deck, the hosts were given a solid foundation through Kallis and Ingram's second-wicket partnership of 119 from 80 balls.
So harsh was the onslaught that South Africa were past the 100-run mark by the 12th over, with the 200 coming in the last over of the innings bowled by Suresh Raina, thanks to some power hitting by Morkel and Justin Ontong.
South Africa's opener Richard Levi provided the early fireworks with 19 off just seven balls to get South Africa up and running, but Irfan Pathan got the better of him as he edged his delivery to Rohit Sharma at first slip. The setback had no effect on the South Africans who rode on Kallis and Ingram's big hitting abilities to put the Indians on the back foot.
Just when things looked bleak for the Indians, R Ashwin struck to send Kallis back after well-made 61. His knock came to an end when his slog sweep off Ashwin failed to clear the rope and Rohit took a smart catch on the ropes.
Ingram continued the onslaught and made 79 from 50 balls before he was brilliantly caught by Rohit at long-on from the bowling off Raina. Debutant Ferhaan Behardien, finished unbeaten on 20 while Ontong smashed 22 from just seven balls and Morkel finished the proceeding as he chipped in with 16 from last three balls.