De Kock was lucky – Sharma

FILE PICTURE: Quinton de Kock of South Africa. (Photo by Duif du Toit/Gallo Images)

Despite South Africa’s Quinton de Kock becoming just the fifth player in One-Day International (ODI) cricket to score three successive centuries, Indian fast bowler Ishant Sharma says the young player enjoyed some good fortune.

“Quinton de Kock has been quite lucky,” Sharma said on Wednesday after the third ODI between South Africa and India was washed out in Pretoria.

“He gets top edges and the ball drops in-between fielders and he was also dropped.”

De Kock was dropped twice before reaching 101, and was forced to play a more subdued innings as his team fell to 28 for three inside the first 10 overs.

Together with captain AB de Villiers (109) the pair put on 171 for the fourth wicket and the Proteas headed towards the 300 mark.

De Kock, however, agreed with his opponent when he was told what Sharma had said about his play.

“He’s telling the truth. This last game today I did get a bit lucky,” De Kock said.

“I wasn’t too happy. I was really angry with myself and I’ll just have to get back into my bubble.”

The Proteas were unable to secure a 3-0 whitewash in the series against India in Centurion Wednesday, as the heavens opened just before the visitors were due to start their chase of 302 for victory.

Sharma was the pick of the Indian attack returning impressive figures of 4/40 off his 10 overs. He claimed the scalp of De Kock just after the batsman had passed the three figure mark.

Luck or not, De Kock was the major difference between the two sides with an average of 114 for the series, including a highest score of 135.

Contrastingly, the South African bowlers dominated their opponents and the top score by an Indian player was captain MS Dhoni’s 65 in the first ODI at the Wanderers.

Batting first in each match, the Proteas posted imposing totals – twice in excess of 300 runs – which laid the platform for the side, according to De Villiers.

“We got runs on the board and it’s as simple as that,” De Villiers said.

“We had to work very hard to get those runs.”

Coming into the series, India were the favourites with their number one ranking in ODI cricket, while the Proteas, ranked fifth, had just lost a home series 2-1 against Pakistan.

“We were playing the number one team in the world and we knew we had to play exceptionally well on our home turf to beat them,” the skipper said.

“But when you play well, you want to make sure you get the results too.

“This Indian attack was a bit lighter than the Pakistan bowling attack, but, having said that, we still had to go out there and do it.”


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