The third ODI between hosts South Africa and the Kiwis turned out to be a rather one sided affair as the Proteas simply asserted their dominance. With the win in the 3rd ODI, the South Africans also won the series, after previously losing the home series against the Blackcaps in early 2013.
AB De Villiers won the toss and had no hesitation in batting first on a reasonably flaccid wicket in Durban. Amla and glovesman Morne Van Wyk got the hosts off to a healthy start as the Kiwi bowlers were not allowed to make any early in roads. The opening partnership was worth 89, as Amla was dismissed caught and bowled by Grant Elliot.
Towards the latter half of the South African innings, AB De Villiers got steady support from David Miller Behardien as he unleashed some lusty blows towards the visitors. En route to his half century, De Villiers notched up a world record as he became the quickest in terms of innings to amass 8000 ODI career runs. That was some feat for South Africa’s very own version of the Superman.
New Zealand got a target of 284, and chasing under lights in Durban was always going to be difficult. For that to happen, New Zealand needed atleast one batsman to play the anchor’s role and carry on for them. But that certainly did not happen as all the Kiwi batsmen threw off their well earned starts. Tom Latham was the only one who got to his half century but he too soon made his way back to the hut.
The likes of Munro, Williamson and Elliot all got starts, but failed to convert them into substantial scores. That undoubtedly hurt the cause of New Zealand’s run chase. For the Proteas, all the bowlers were on the mark as the pacers dominated thoughout. Rabada impressed one and all with his control and pace. Imran Tahir was once again priceless as he conceded less than four runs an over and struck twice. The South Africans always looked strong, and won the game by 62 runs.
AB De Villiers was named the Man of the Match while Hashim Amla was the Man of the Series. New Zealand, despite a series loss would not be too disappointed as their inexperienced squad without skipper Brendon McCullum did reasonably well in testing conditions.