Bowlers came to the party as India women pipped South Africa women by six runs in the third and final ODI of the series to complete a series sweep at the Reliance Stadium in Vadodara on Monday.
The spin-bowling trio of Ekta Bisht, Deepti Sharma and Rajeshwari Gayakwad played pivotal role as India won the low-scoring thriller in the series finale.
Electing to bat, India women could only put 146 runs on the board. The opening pair of Priya Punia and Jemimah Rodrigues were back in the dressing room with only five runs on the board.
The middle-order collapse which saw Punam Raut, skipper Mithali Raj, Deepti Sharma and Tanya Bhatia perish cheaply for the scores of 15, 11, 7 and 6 runs respectively as South Africa left India reeling at 71/6.
However, Harmanpreet Kaur and Shikha Pandey put up a 49-run stand to push India past 110. While India’s T20I skipper scored 38 off 76 balls, Pandey scored 35 off 40 balls before India were bowled out for 146.
For South Africa, Marizanne Kapp scalped three wickets while Shabnim Ismail and Ayabonga Khaka picked two wickets each.
Chasing 147, Marizanne Kapp scored 29, while captain Sune Luus and Laura Wolvaardt chipped in with 24 and 23 runs respectively. But none of the other South Africa women contribute with the bat.
Bisht, who returned with the figures of 3/32 in her ten overs and was named player of the match, Sharma (2/24) and Gayakwad (2/22) shared seven wickets among themselves and never allowed the visitors to enjoy an upperhand in the chase.
Harmanpreet Kaur, Jemimah Rodrigues and Manasi Joshi also picked a wicket each, with the former conceding just 14 runs in her 6 overs, as India bowled out South Africa for 140 runs, denying them a chance to seal a consolation win.
India, who had earlier won the six-match Twenty20 international series 3-1, had won the first two matches of the ODI series by eight and six wickets respectively.
Brief Scores: India Women 146/10 (Harmanpreet Kaur 38, Shikha Pandey 35; Marizanne Kapp 3/20) beat South Africa Women 140/10 (Marizanne Kapp 29, Sune Luus 24; Ekta Bisht 3/32) by six runs