'Wasn't our best effort', reckons SA skipper Bavuma after loss in 3rd T20I over India

Temba Bavuma plays a shot | ANI

Visakhapatnam: After facing a 48-run defeat against India in the third T20I of the five-match series, South Africa skipper Temba Bavuma said that the performance by his team was not up to the mark and they did not put forward their best efforts.

An all-round performance by India helped them in defeating South Africa by 48 runs in the third T20I of five-match series at Dr Y.S. Rajasekhara Reddy ACA-VDCA Cricket Stadium in Visakhapatnam on Tuesday.

"As a collective, it wasn't our best effort. They were the better side. With the ball, they put us under pressure. The fielding really didn't back us up. With the batting, we didn't really turn up. The partnerships weren't there, there was no momentum. There have been a lot of improvements in the fielding department, this game we weren't up to the mark, in the first two games we were quite strong," said Bavuma in a post-match presentation.

"Thoughts coming out to bat, we tried to assess, tried to get some momentum, unfortunately, we couldn't do that. Losing three early wickets always puts us under pressure," he added.

South Africa are currently playing without their star wicketkeeper-batter Quinton de Kock as he sustained a wrist injury during the first T20I match on June 9 and was forced to miss the second and the third clash.

"Quinton is an integral member of the team. Unfortunately, we don't have him. We back Reeza at the top. The opportunity is there, we'll keep going with Reeza," said the Proteas skipper.

India have opened their account in the five-match T20I series with this win in the do-or-die clash. With the series still 2-1 in favour of the visitors, the fourth T20I will be played on Friday at Saurashtra Cricket Association Stadium, Gujarat.

Batting first, a 97-run stand between Ruturaj Gaikwad (57) and Ishan Kishan (54) powered India to 179/5 in their allotted 20 overs. The first innings was a see-saw one as India dominated the first half of the innings, but South Africa pulled back momentum to their side in the other half.

In reply, the Proteas never looked like going as they kept losing wickets at regular intervals and in the end were bundled out for 131 with five balls still to play. For Men in Blue, Yuzvendra Chahal and Harshal Patel starred with the ball as they bagged three and four wickets respectively to derail the visitors' chase. Bhuvneshwar Kumar and Axar Patel scalped one wicket apiece.

Proteas and the Men in Blue will be squaring off for the fourth T20I at Rajkot on Friday. (ANI)

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