South Africa with chase thriller once more against Australia
David Miller, who came six-down, single-handedly busted excellent knocks from David Warner and his skipper Steven Smith to help South Africa successfully chase down 371 in the third ODI of their ongoing series at Durban.
With that win, the South Africans took an unassailable lead of 3-0 in the five-match series against the World No. 1 limited-overs side.
Smith and Co. had the match in their pockets when the hosts struggled with wickets falling towards the end. In the last 12 overs, South Africa still needed 104 runs with four wickets in hand and Miller at the crease.
Miller, who was the eventual Player of the Match, finished with 118 runs off 79 balls that included six maximums and ten fours at an excellent strike rate of almost 150. Hashim Amla and Quinton de Kock contributed with crucial 70 and 45 runs.
This was the second biggest chase in the ODI history. The top two biggest ODI chases belong to the Proteas and two out of those three came against Australia.
Interestingly, Australia, the five-time World Champion, have been on the receiving end of the top four biggest chases in the ODIs.
An Aussie skipper not good enough, again!
Miller's innings brought back memories of Herschelle Gibbs's 175 that helped South Africa chase down 435 with a ball to spare at Johannesburg a decade ago.
There was another similarity with the famous 435 chase. Ricky Ponting led the Australian side then, who top-scored for them with 164 off 105 balls helping them establish a large total of 435.
However, his captain's knock went in vain when the Proteas unleashed themselves on a relatively stronger Australian attack of Stuart Clark, Brett Lee, Nathan Bracken and Andrew Symonds. While Gibbs scored 175, Graeme Smith (90) and Mark Boucher (50) made other major contributions.
Similarly, Smith who leads the current Men in Yellow scored his sixth ODI ton, and the other hundred for them came off his deputy and opening batsman, Warner's bat. Like Ponting, Smith's knock was also not good enough to deny the Proteas yet another historic ODI chase.