Ashish Nehra celebrates a wicket. Photograph: BCCI
Ashish Nehra celebrates a wicket. Photograph: BCCI

Ashish Nehra, the former Indian pacer praised the efforts of David Miller and Rassie van der Dussen, which made the six-man Indian bowling unit seem less. The South African duo were involved in an unbeaten 131-run partnership for the fourth wicket in the first T20I at the Arun Jaitley Stadium on Thursday.

The Proteas recorded their highest ever run chase in the shortest format at the expense of the Indian bowling unit. Earlier, India registered the highest total at the venue in Delhi. However, they failed to defend as South Africa scaled down a mammoth 212-run target with five balls to spare.

David Miller, Rassie van der Dussen
David Miller, Rassie van der Dussen (Credits: Twitter)

Ashish Nehra: David Miller Has Started International Cricket The Same Way He Left IPL 2022

India’s several first-choice players were unavailable. Rohit Sharma, Virat Kohli, and Jasprit Bumrah have all been rested for the 5-match T20I series. KL Rahul and Kuldeep Yadav were both injured just one day before the series began. As a result, Rishabh Pant was tasked with leading India.

South Africa pulled off their highest successful chase in T20I cricket, and denied India a record 13th successive T20I victory, despite being a batter light in the series opener. India would have fancied their chances after they made use of some early luck to post their highest total against South Africa – 211 for 4 – and the highest T20I total at Delhi’s Arun Jaitley Stadium.

Showering praise on David Miller’s exploits, Ashish Nehra said: “The form Miller is in, he has started International cricket the same way he left the IPL. India had the bowlers today, even Pandya as the sixth option, but even that was not enough. It is not easy to chase 212, but Miller and van der Dussen did not allow the bowlers to settle as well.”

Ashish Nehra (Image Credit: Twitter)
Ashish Nehra (Image Credit: Twitter)

The explosive left-handed batter came into the series on the back of a sensational IPL 2022 season. He recorded 481 runs in the Gujarat Titans’ (GT) winning campaign and continued his fine touch in international cricket.

Believing that confidence and experience are the keys behind David Miller’s success, Nehra said: “Miller did not do that well in the last couple of editions in the IPL, but he has been doing well in the International circuit. He had that confidence and he showed it in the IPL, he also has experience and the ability.”

He added: “This did not happen overnight, it is not like he performed well for a couple of series before the IPL and went for big bucks at the auction like some Caribbean players.”

The 32-year-old power hitter was unsold on the first day of the IPL 2022 mega auction. The new franchise roped him in for a sum of ₹3 crores following a bidding war with his former franchise Rajasthan Royals (RR). It turned out to be the best buy for the Gujarat Titans he made significant contributions in the middle order.

Parthiv Patel Reckons It’s Difficult To Bowl To In Form David Miller Who Has A Wide Range Of Shots

India went with six bowling options in Rishabh Pant’s maiden fixture as captain. Problems began when Indian pace spearhead Bhuvneshwar Kumar failed to extract swing with the new ball. Issues started to mount when Dwaine Pretorius played a counter-attacking knock in the powerplay to provide the impetus.

The Men in Blue bounced back with a couple of wickets and were ahead in the contest at the halfway stage of the run chase. However, a dropped catch by Shreyas Iyer spelled trouble for the side as David Miller and Rassie van der Dussen finished the contest in the final over.

Parthiv Patel
Parthiv Patel (Credits: Twitter)

Claiming that it is difficult to bowl to David Miller when he is on a song, the former wicketkeeper-batter Parthiv Patel said: “You cannot specifically pinpoint where India went wrong with their bowling. It’s just that the South Africa batters played really well. The way van der Dussen paced the innings was great. It is difficult to bowl to Miller when he is in that sort of form, because you only have limited options against someone who has such a wide range.”

The Temba Bavuma-led side took a 1-0 lead with a win in the first T20I. The teams will meet at the Barabati Stadium in Cuttack for the next match on June 12 (Sunday).

Brief Scores: India 211/4 in 20 overs (Ishan Kishan 76, Shreyas Iyer 36; Wayne Parnell 1/32, Dwaine Pretorius 1/35) lost to South Africa 212/3 in 19.1 overs (Rassie van der Dussen 75 not out, David Miller 64 not out; Axar Patel 1/40, Bhuvneshwar Kumar 1/43) by seven wickets