Indian leg-spinner Yuzvendra Chahal’s match-winning return of 5/22 in the second ODI at Centurion yesterday was only the third five-wicket haul by a spin bowler in an ODI in South Africa. Here is a look at the top five ODI bowling figures by spinners in the Rainbow Nation.
5/21 by Nicky Boje (South Africa) v Australia, Cape Town, 2001-02
Down 5-0 in the series, South Africa snatched a consolation 65-run win in the seventh and final game, thanks to a career-best return from slow left-armer Nicky Boje. In what was a 39-over affair due to rain, the Proteas posted a formidable 249/7. Australia faltered against pace in reply, and were reduced to 98/5 by the 18th over.
Boje joined the party in his second over, castling Ian Harvey to make it 126/6. His third over brought him two wickets, those of Shane Warne and the dangerous Michael Bevan, who hit a breezy 55. Boje bowled unchanged till the end, wrapping the game up by taking the last two wickets in three balls to finish with 5 for 21 in just 6.3 overs.
Left-armer Nicky Boje’s 5/21 against Australia at Cape Town in 2001-02 are the best bowling figures by a spinner in ODIs in South Africa (source – gettyimages)
5/22 by Yuzvendra Chahal (India) v South Africa, Centurion, 2017-18
Yuzvendra Chahal condemned South Africa to their lowest ever ODI total at home with a bamboozling spell. The hosts were placed at 51/1 in the 13th over when the wrist-spinner first struck, having Quinton de Kock caught at deep mid-wicket. Supported by Kuldeep Yadav, he went on to wreak havoc through the remainder of the innings.
Chahal’s second victim was debutant Khaya Zondo, and he followed it up with the scalp of JP Duminy in his next over. It was not too long before Imran Tahir and Chris Morris too succumbed to his wiles, handing him his maiden ODI five-wicket haul. India waltzed to a thumping nine-wicket victory, chasing the target in only 20.3 overs.
5/23 by Muttiah Muralitharan (Sri Lanka) v Pakistan, Benoni, 1997-98
This was the seventh ODI of the Standard Bank tri-series, with Sri Lanka needing a win to stay alive. Off-spin wizard Muttiah Muralitharan rose to the occasion, recording the first ODI five-wicket haul by a spinner on South African soil. The previous best by a spinner in South Africa was Shane Warne’s 4/36 at Port Elizabeth in 1993-94.
After Marvan Atapattu (94) and skipper Arjuna Ranatunga (78*) powered Sri Lanka to 288/7, Pakistan were reduced to 44/4 by the pacemen. ‘Murali’ kept up the pressure and ran through the latter half of the Pakistani batting, beginning with the vital wicket of opener Saeed Anwar (59), to send the score from 126/5 to 173 all out.
South Africa’s batsmen were clueless against Indian leg-spinner Yuzvendra Chahal, who took 5/22 in the second ODI at Centurion (source – BCCI)
4/6 by Yuvraj Singh (India) v Namibia, Pietermaritzburg, 2002-03
Yuvraj Singh’s part-time left-arm spin befuddled Namibia’s lower order in this lopsided World Cup group match at the City Oval, famous for having a tree within the boundary. A mammoth second-wicket stand of 244 between Sachin Tendulkar (152) and captain Sourav Ganguly (112*) ensured that India reached 311/2.
In reply, the greenhorn Namibians capitulated to 47/5, before staging a recovery of sorts to be bowled out for 130 in 42.3 overs. Yuvraj was brought in to bowl in the 33rd over with the score at 99/6, and had Melt van Schoor caught behind off his second ball. He made short work of the tail, finishing with remarkable figures of 4.3-2-6-4.
4/16 by Jean-Paul Duminy (South Africa) v Ireland, Benoni, 2016-17
South Africa effectively killed the contest after being inserted by Ireland in this one-off ODI at Willowmoore Park, racking up an imposing total of 354/5. Quinton de Kock (82) and debutant Temba Bavuma (113) shared an opening stand of 159, before JP Duminy (52*) and Farhan Behardien (50) rubbed more salt into Ireland’s wounds.
Ireland were never in the reckoning, but at 115/5 in the 23rd over, they still had hopes of reaching a decent total. However, Duminy, who was the sixth bowler used, consumed Stuart Poynter to hasten Ireland’s demise. He also got rid of Kevin O’Brien in his next over, and went on to take 4/16 as the hosts cruised to victory by 206 runs.