Terrific show by the bowlers: Dhoni

Johannesburg, Jan 16 (PTI) India skipper Mahendra Singhlavished rich praise on his bowlers after their stunning showin the second one-day international against South Africa,which helped the team level the five-match series, here today.

"It''s a big win for us, and a terrific show by thebowlers. Munaf (Patel) has been bowling really well in thelast 10-15 one-dayers and besides that, Harbhajan''s role toowas crucial," Dhoni said after India''s one-run win at the NewWanderers Stadium here.

"When Harbhajan came on to bowl they decided not to takeon his bowling and the lost the momentum there. So, his rolewas very crucial," Dhoni added.

Asked about Yuvraj Singh''s innings, Dhoni said, "Yuvrajis our main batsman in the middle order. It''s important forhim to get off to a good start and it''s always a treat towatch him once he gets his eye in."

Yuvraj top-scored for India with a fluent half centuryand was involved in a crucial 83-run partnership for thefourth wicket with his skipper. But his dismissal triggered acollapse from which India could never recover.

"It was a very good wicket and I think we were 40-45 runsshort. We wanted to take the powerplay just before Yuvraj gotout and then, when we took it, Raina got out. But the openersgot off to a sound start," Dhoni said.

"Three games to go, it makes it interesting. We areexpecting some tough cricket," he said.

Graeme Smith, who reached 6000 ODI runs today, lauded theIndian bowlers, especially Munaf, but felt some bad decisionspushed his team on the backfoot.

"We''ve got to be honest and can''t take the credit fromIndia, they put up really good show. But there were a few ofbad decisions," Smith said.

"Munaf bowled well, especially the slower one," he added.

Smith was also pleased with Lonwabo Tsotsobe''s bowling.

He picked up his second successive four-wicket haul, today.

Despite dominating for a major part of the match, SouthAfrica lost, and Smith felt things went wrong in the last 25overs of their innings.

"We played well in the first 50 overs, batted well forthe first 25 overs but the last 25 overs didn''t go well."

"We hope to improve and do things right in the nextmatch, things we did wrong today," Smith said.

Man of the Match, Munaf Patel, said he focused on bowlingto a good line and length. "Initially, I concentrated on lineand length, but used the slower balls later on," Munaf said.

"I was thinking about my local crowd who are here, so Iwas under a bit of pressure, because they would otherwise cometo my hotel room," Munaf joked when asked what was goingthrough his ind when he was bowling those crucial overs. PTIAH

Please Wait while comments are loading...