After surviving a scare in the first match, India managed to obtain a convincing victory in the 2nd match of the series against Zimbabwe, by defeating the hosts by 62 runs. This win also sealed the series in the favour of the visitors as India has taken an unassailable 2-0 lead in the three match series.
An all-round performance from the batsmen as well as the bowlers ensured that Rahane’s side emerged triumphant at the end of the day’s play. Firstly the opening pair of Ajinkya Rahane (63) and Murali Vijay(72) gave India a flying start as they scored 112 runs for the first wicket and they both cruised to individual half centuries.
Their valiant effort was complemented by the middle order, consisting of Ambati Rayudu(41), Manoj Tiwary(22) and Stuart Binny(25) which helped India to reach a challenging total of 271/8. The Indian middle order did put up a considerable fight this time contrary to the last match, where they remained vastly dysfunctional. Still the batting woes are not yet resolved for the Indians as they lost 6 wickets for 77 runs in the final 10 overs.
Speaking of the bowling, Bhuvneshwar Kumar again remained the pick of the bowlers as he finished the day with amazing figures of 10-3-33-4! His fabulous bowling effort might have fetched him the man of the match award which otherwise went to Murali Vijay. He was well supported by Dhawal Kulkarni(1/39), Harbhajan Singh(1/29), Binny(1/42) and Axar Patel(1/40). They bowled economically with a tight line and length and virtually forced the Zimbabwean batsmen to surrender in front of their bowling.
The home team did give the Indians a run for their money in the last ODI but in this match it was a completely different scenario. Amongst their bowlers, N Madziva(4/49) and in their batting, C Chibhabha(72) gave Zimbabwe some hope but their efforts were outshone by the Indians. Much was expected from skipper Elton Chigumbura, who struck an emphatic century in the previous match, but he only managed to get 9 runs.
Ajinkya Rahane must be very pleased with his team as their combined team effort has gifted him a series victory on his debut as Indian skipper, however weak Zimbabwe as a opponent be. For now the last ODI of the series will be played on Wednesday(July 14) which now remains just a formality.