Bloemfontein - A century on debut by Colin Ingram and another from Hashim Amla have helped South Africa to a 64 run victory over Zimbabwe in their first One Day International played in Bloemfontein on Friday night.
South Africa won the toss and chose to bat first in gloomy weather conditions making a massive 351 runs for the loss of six wickets. Zimbabwe replied with 287/6 as Brendan Taylor carried his bat for the visitors ending on an unbeaten 145.
Amla reached his century first, off 87 balls hitting 14 boundaries and, at that point, was also only the second South African to score a hundred on this ground, the first being Andrew Hudson against India in 1992.
Ingram, donning the 99th cap for South Africa in one-day cricket, went on to make 124 off 126 balls, and became only the sixth person in ODI history to score a hundred on debut, and the highest scorer on debut for the Proteas after Shaun Pollock's 66 against England in 1995.
The Zimbabweans were always going to struggle to reach the target and started slowly but steadily. Taylor and Hamilton Masakadza laid the foundation with a 70 run stand before Masakadza was caught in the deep by Johan Botha for Theron's first wicket.
A relatively subdued Chamu Chibhabha joined Taylor at the crease but he only managed 10 runs before he was caught behind by AB de Villiers off the bowling of Wayne Parnell.
Sean Williams and Taylor put on 32 runs together before Williams was caught by Botha off Theron for 10 as the visitors continued to fall further and further behind the required run rate.
Grant Flower, playing in his first game for Zimbabwe after a six year sabbatical, did little to speed things up and the team went ten overs without a boundary. He was dropped on seven but his innings ended tamely when he was caught by Smith at short midwicket off Theron for 13.
Tatenda Taibu came to the crease with the score at 158/4 but was caught on the boundary, also for 13, by Amla off Botha, when he was trying to up the tempo.
Taylor's hundred came off 105 balls but he was made to work hard for his runs as he only hit seven boundaries. He shared another 50 partnership, this time with captain Elton Chigumbura but to no avail. Chigumbura was caught by Albie Morkel for 23 giving Theron his third wicket.
Zimbabwe eventually reached 287/6 off their 50 overs with Taylor on 145 and Prosper Utseya not out on 22.
Theron ended with figures of 3/62 off his 10 overs and took a catch in what was also his maiden one-day game.
Earlier, the South African openers Graeme Smith and Amla put on 64 runs before Smith (19) was caught at short cover by Taylor off the bowling of Shangirai Masakadza.
Amla and Ingram went on to share a 136 run partnership for the second wicket before Amla was run out on 110 by Utseya.
De Villiers came to the crease and faced 16 balls before he was run out by Graeme Cremer for 21 and Morkel made just one run before he was caught by Utseya off S Masakadza.
Ingram was joined by Dave Miller and the two batsmen trotted along steadily pushing up the score. On 99, Ingram again played and missed but reached his 100 off 110 balls (6x4, 1x6) and was eventually bowled by S Masakadza for 124.
Miller made his half-century, also bowled by S Masakadza in the last over of the innings for 51, leaving JP Duminy not out, on 6 and Johan Botha on 3.
Masakadza was the only bowler to take any wickets but his four came at a price as he gave away 86 runs.
H. Amla run out (Utseya) 110
G. Smith c Taylor b S. Masakadza 19
C. Ingram b S. Masakadza 124
A. de Villiers run out (Cremer) 21
A. Morkel c Utseya b S. Masakadza 1
D. Miller b S. Masakadza 51
J. Duminy not out 6
J. Botha not out 3
Extras (lb5, w11) 16
Total (6 wkts, 50 overs) 351
Did not bat: W. Parnell, J. Theron, C. Langeveldt
Fall of wickets: 1-64 (Smith), 2-200 (Amla), 3-240 (De Villiers), 4-255 (Morkel), 5-331 (Ingram), 6-346 (Miller)
Bowling: Mpofu 8-0-59-0 (4w), S. Masakadza 10-0-86-4, Chigumbura 5-0-43-0 (4w), Utseya 10-0-48-0 (1w), Cremer 10-0-64-0 (1w), Flower 4-0-23-0, Williams 2-0-14-0 (1w), Taylor 1-0-9-0
H. Masakadza c Botha b Theron 30
B. Taylor not out 145
C. Chibhabha c De Villiers b Parnell 10
S. Williams c Theron b Botha 10
G. Flower c Smith b Theron 13
T. Taibu c Amla b Botha 13
E. Chigumbura c Morkel b Theron 23
P. Utseya not out 22
Extras (lb15, w6) 21
Total (6 wkts, 50 overs) 287
Did not bat: S. Masakadza, G. Cremer, C. Mpofu
Fall of wickets: 1-70 (H. Masakadza), 2-90 (Chibhabha), 3-122 (Williams), 4-158 (Flower), 5-179 (Taibu), 6-246 (Chigumbura)
Bowling: Morkel 10-1-47-0, Parnell 10-0-59-1 (2w), Langeveldt 10-0-63-0 (3w), Theron 10-0-62-3, Botha 10-0-41-2 (1w)
Result: South Africa win by 64 runs
Man of match: Colin Ingram (RSA)
Toss: South Africa
Umpires: Enamul Haque (BAN) and Marais Erasmus (RSA)
TV umpire: Brian Jerling (RSA)
Match referee: Roshan Mahanama (SRI)
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