Trent Bridge: India's disastrous world campaign ended to a chorus of boos from its supporters as they suffered 12-run loss to South Africa at Trent Bridge, Nottingham, on Tuesday.
Despite restricting mighty South Africa to 130/5 and then putting up 48-run opening partnership, Indian struggling middle-order, again faltered just when everything was in their favour.The defending champions put up an ordinary batting display and finished with 118 for eight in their 20 overs, falling short of 12 runs.
The Indians, 55-1 at one stage, lost four top order wickets for 14 runs against Proteas bowling attack.
Indian captain Dhoni himself was the best example for India's pathetic batting display as he ran out of wide ball from Morne Morkel when Yuvraj Singh refused his call for a sharp single.
Gautam Gambhir (21) and Rohit Sharma (29) gave India a strong start but it was Yuvraj Singh's run-a-ball 25 that actually rekindled India's hopes. But India's chase effectively ended when Yuvraj was given out caught at the wicket off Steyn in the 19th over.
Johan Botha led a disciplined South African bowling performance, claiming three wickets for 16 runs from four overs, while Dale Steyntook two for 25.
As usual Dhoni blamed India's batting for the defeat against England.
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"Our batting didn't do well today," he admitted. "I am quite happy with the performance of the bowlers but we lacked a few things with the batting. We have got good support, but we have to win games."
Earlier South Africa, who elected to bat on a slow wicket, struggled against the Indian attack to make just 130-5. De Villiers top scored with 63 off 51 balls, but the Proteas made painful progress with no boundaries scored between the sixth and 13th overs.
Dhoni used eight bowlers to fill up the 20 overs, with five of them picking up wickets as the Proteas attempted to increase the run-rate. Skipper Smith was the only other batsman besides de Villiers to cross 20 as South Africa managed just 32 runs in the last five overs.
The Indians won just two preliminary matches against Bangladesh and Ireland, while losing all three Super Eight games against the West Indies, England and now South Africa.