MS Dhoni and co. have clinched ODI series against Zimbabwe at Harare © AFP
MS Dhoni and co. have clinched ODI series against Zimbabwe at Harare © AFP

India have won the second ODI match against Zimbabwe by 8 wickets thereby clinching ODI series. India showed clinical performance in all units, be it Yuzvendra Chahal’s three-wicket haul or Karun Nair’s fifty-run stand with KL Rahul and Ambati Rayudu. Despite inexperience in ODI format, MS Dhoni and co. have managed to prove how the new bunch can be effective not only in T20Is but also in ODI. Zimbabwe tried to elevate their performance with the help of Vusi Sibanda and Sikandar Raza’s partnership, until India’s spin attack proved to be hefty on the hosts. India still have a match to go against Zimbabwe at Harare and considering the visitors have taken the lead, it will be a drab. Meanwhile, let us have a look at some of highlights from both the innings of second ODI: LIVE CRICKET SCORECARD: India vs Zimbabwe 2016, 2nd ODI at Harare

Sean Williams absent-hurt: When Dhoni won the toss and elected to field, both the teams were asked about the changes for the match. While Dhoni was happy with the side that provided with first win, Graeme Cremer made a single change and kept Craig Ervine out calling in Sean Williams. During the practice session, Williams injured his finger and in turn was ruled out. Ideally, change could have happened after the match, but Cremer decided to play with 10-side squad. This looked a familiar situation when England played against Australia in 2009. After the toss, Brad Haddin who was included in the Australia squad during toss was later rested due to injury. Andrew Strauss, England’s then captain, allowed for the change to happen and Graham Manou was called in for replacement. Williams’s inclusion could have created an impact for Zimbabwe against India in 2nd ODI.

Vusi Sibanda & Sikandar Raza’s stable partnership: By the 10th over, Zimbabwe were already down with three wickets. First being Hamilton Masakadza with a comfortable catch by Jasprit Bumrah and breakthrough provided by Barinder Sran, followed by yet another wicket by Sran of Peter Moor for 1. India’s pacer Dhawal Kulkarni also got his wicket of Chamu Chibhabha, who was playing a balanced innings until he was dismissed for 21. Sibanda had to play a steady innings to get some runs on board after 10th over and he did that. Sibanda and Raza reached fifty-run stand by 20.4 overs until Raza was gone for 16, with their partnership ending at 67-runs. ALSO READ: Yuzvendra Chahal, Ambati Rayudu shine as India clinch ODI series win vs Zimbabwe at Harare

Visu Sibanda’s 21st ODI fifty: Out of the 67 runs added by Sibanda and Raza, the maximum contribution was made by Sibanda with his 21st ODI fifty, achieving the same by 60 balls including six fours and a six. He smashed the short ball of Akshar Patel to boundary towards long-on when he was playing on 48 and thereby achieving his half-century. Sibanda also fell prey to Chahal’s spin attack and was dismissed for 53 off 69.

Yuzvendra Chahal’s three-wicket haul: India were desperately looking to break the momentum between Sibanda and Raza. They had already achieved 67 runs with the help of Sibanda’s fifty. Soon Raza was dismissed within 26th over, thanks to Kedar Jadhav leaving no opportunity to leave the wicket down and Chahal getting a crucial wicket to his name. It was followed by yet another wicket of Elton Chigumbura exiting for golden duck. Chahal was on a hat-trick but missed the opportunity with new batsman Richmond Mitumbami playing safe with dot ball. Chahal was surely wanting  more and he scalped another important wicket of Sibanda within 28th over for 53. With that Zimbabwe faced downfall and was almost all out for 126.

Karun Nair’s steady run with KL Rahul and Ambati Rayudu: India’s opening duo KL Rahul and Karun Nair started off with their innings steadily with 48-run stand before heading for lunch. They continued their form until Rahul was dismissed for 33 by Chibhabha. KL Rahul could have been dismissed early had his wicket was not dropped by Sikandar Raza when he was batting on 22. Nair also was lucky when he was declared out with a lbw by Chatara, until it was declared no-ball when he was playing at 10. The opening pair managed to put up 57-run stand. Once Rahul was dismissed, Ambati Rayudu was off the mark with back-to-back boundaries. Nair and Rayudu were at stage when they were racing to achieve their half-century, but their combined efforts brought up 67-run stand until Nair was dismissed for 39.

MS Dhoni’s ODI series win after 2014: India have won the ODI series against Zimbabwe taking an unassailable lead of 2-0. They have won the ODI series after 2014 was When West Indies toured India. Since then Dhoni has lost two ICC tournaments. Keeping these factors aside, he also is the only captain to win ICC World T20, ICC World Cup and ICC Champions Trophy. This could be a boosting factor for Dhoni and co. ahead of ICC Champions Trophy in 2017.

(Shruti Hariharan is a Content Writer with CricketCountry. You can follow her on Twitter at @Shruti_2890)