Harare, June 13: An all-round effort helped Team India thrash Zimbabwe by 8 wickets in the second One Day International match and clinch series at Harare Sports Complex, here today (June 13).
Chasing a modest 127, India's young openers Lokesh Rahul (33) and Karun Nair (39) put on a 58-run stand before Nair and Ambati Rayudu (41 not out) forged another 67-run second-wicket partnership to take India within sniffing distance.
Manish Pandey (4) finished off the proceedings with a boundary to covers, India pocketing the win with 139 balls to spare.
For the hosts, none of the bowlers could trouble the Indian batsmen as all-rounders Chamu Chibhabha and Sikandar Raza managed to take one wicket apiece.
Earlier, Chahal scalped three wickets as India produced another professional bowling effort to dismiss a fragile Zimbabwe batting line-up for 126.
Zimbabwe lost their last seven wickets for 20 runs to be bundled out in 34.3 overs.
Indian pacers Barinder Sran (2/17) and Dhawal Kulkarni (2/31) performed their duties early on before leggie Chahal (3/25) joined the party in his second ODI.
The visitors are expected to chase down the modest target with ease to take an unassailable lead in the series. India had won the opening ODI comfortably here on Saturday.
It was another chilly morning at the Harare Sports Club and Dhoni, winning the toss for the second time in succession, expectedly put the opposition in. Sran and Kulkarni got the ball to swing from the word go.
Zimbabwe chose to open with Hamilton Masakadaza (9) and Chamu Chibhabha (21) this time but the move did not work as lack of application from the top-order left them struggling at 39/3 in 10 overs.
The experienced Vusi Sibanda gave the innings some momentum with a fighting 53 off 69 balls, but his fall led to a batting collapse.
He shared a handy 67-run stand with Sikandar Raza (16 off 41) to take his side past the 100-run mark. Chahal triggered the collapse by removing Raza and Elton Chigumbura (0) to be on a hat-trick. Thirteen balls later, the spinner sent back Sibanda to have Zimbabwe in further trouble at 107 for six.
Sibanda was the lone warhorse for Zimbabwe as he completed his 21st ODI half century. His knock comprised six fours and a six.
It was a fresh pitch used for this game but stroke-making remained difficult. More than the conditions, the Zimbabwe batsmen had themselves to blame as they did not learn from the mistakes made in the opening game. Number 11 Sean Williams did not come out to bat owing to a sudden finger injury.
India: MS Dhoni (w/c), KL Rahul, Manish Pandey, Karun Nair, Ambati Rayudu, Kedar Jadhav, Axar Patel, Dhawal Kulkarni, Jasprit Bumrah, Barinder Sran, Yuzvendra Chahal.
Zimbabwe: Graeme Cremer(c), Hamilton Masakadza, Chamu Chibhabha, Richmond Mutumbami(w), Vusi Sibanda, Sean Williams, Sikandar Raza, Peter Moor, Elton Chigumbura, Taurai Muzarabani, Tendai Chatara.