Surat, Oct 1 (IANS) Shafali Verma and Poonam Yadav starred for India Women as they thrashed South Africa by 51 runs to take an unassailable 2-0 lead in the five-match T20 series here on Tuesday.
After two rubbers were washed out without a ball bowled, India bettered on their 1-0 lead taken in the first game to win the rain-affected fourth match which was shortened to 17 overs a side.
Opener Shafali, who became the youngest T20I debutant for India while playing the first game, top-scored for the hosts with a 33-ball 46, her innings laced with five fours and two sixes. Jemimah Rodrigues smashed a 22-ball 33 as India led by Harmanpreet Kaur who scored 16, put up 140/4 in 17 overs after being asked to bat first.
For the visitors, medium pacer Nadine de Klerk returned best figures of 2/24.
In their reply, South Africa were never in the chase as they kept losing wickets at regular intervals. Leg-spinner Poonam took two wickets in back-to-back deliveries in the 11th over and snared another two overs later to help her side coast to victory. She returned figures of 3/13 in three overs.
South Africa managed 89/7 in 17 overs.
For South Africa, only Laura Wolvaardt (23) and Tazmin Brits (20) scored in double figures.
The fifth and last game is on Friday.
In the first match, India successfully defended a target of 131 thanks to a brilliant spell from off-spinner Deepti Sharma, who bowled three consecutive maidens and took three wickets in that period, helping India dismiss South Africa for 119.
The T20 series will be followed by a three-match ODI rubber in Vadodara.
Brief scores: India Women 140/4 in 17 overs (Shafali Verma 46, Jemimah Rodrigues 33; Nadine de Klerk 2/22) beat South Africa Women 89/7 in 17 overs (Laura Wolvaardt 23; Poonam Yadav 3/13) by 51 runs.