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South Africa chase down India’s 199

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Newsgram Staff Writer

Dharmasala: Jean-Paul Duminy and AB de Villiers played a blinder of an innings to guide South Africa to a comfortable seven-wicket win over India in the first Twenty20 International (T20I) at the Himachal Pradesh Cricket Association (HPCA) Stadium here on Friday. The Proteas victory overshadowed Rohit Sharma’s 66-ball 106

Duminy (68 of 34 balls, 1×4 7×6) and Farhaan Behardien (32 of 23 balls, 4×4 1×6) remained unbeaten as South Africa chased down India’s mammoth score of 199/5 in 20 overs to post 200/3 in 19.4 overs.

While de Villiers (51 of 32 balls) started the proceedings for the visitors in the run chase, Duminy and Behardien stitched an unbeaten 105-run stand for the fourth wicket to script a memorable victory for the visitors and thus help South Africa go 1-0 up in three-match series.

South Africa got off to a flying start scoring over ten an over in the first seven overs. But batsman Hashim Amla (36) who was looking set ran himself out in the eighth over, handing India their breakthrough.

But the wicket didn’t bother his partner, de Villiers who went on scoring freely and helping his side maintain a steady run rate. But just after completing his half-century, he tried to step put off the bowling off Ravichandran Ashwin but the clever spinner bowled a lot slower and the ball brushed his back thigh and deflected on to the stumps.

Skipper Faf du Plessis (4) didn’t trouble the scoring too much as he went back cheaply putting the visitors in a bit of trouble in a chase of 200. The team was 95/3 in 11th over then.

But Duminy and Behardien played sensibly, using all their experience to build on a match winning partnership to take the visitors home.

For India, Ravichandran Ashwin (1/26) was the pick of the bowlers.

Earlier after being sent into bat, India received a setback when opener Shikhar Dhawan (3) was run out while trying to steal a single of miss-field. His valiant dive wasn’t enough to save his wicket as India was reduced to 22/1 in 3.1 overs.

The other opener Sharma (106, 12×4, 5×6) though tried to shake off the disappointment and hit some lusty blows to rev up India’s run rate, which reached 50 in 6.4 overs.

Kohli (43 of 27 balls, 1×4, 3×6) also joined the act, hitting a consecutive six and a four at the start of the eighth over off pacer Chris Morris.

Sharma reached the 50-run mark in the ninth over, guiding a wide delivery off pacer Kyle Abbott to the boundary.

The Sharma-Kohli 138-run second wicket partnership enabled India to launch a no-holds-barred charge in the death overs.

Sharma began the charge scoring boundaries almost at will. The 28-year-old right-hander brought up his century with a majestic six over long on off pacer Merchant de Lange in the 15th over.

Kohli also achieved a personal milestone in the process, becoming the first Indian to score 1,000 runs in T20 internationals.

Though first Kohli and then Sharma departed in the same over, dismissed by Abbott, India were firmly placed to post a strong total. Abbot was South Africa’s most successful bowler picking up two wickets for 29 runs.

(With inputs from IANS)

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Chocolate Ingredient Cacao Dates Back To 5,400 yrs Ago

A growing interest in cacao flavors, indicates a return to a time when chocolate wasn't just an ingredient buried in a candy bar.

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chocolate
A worker holds dried cacao seeds at a plantation in Cano Rico, Venezuela. VOA

New research strengthens the case that people used the chocolate ingredient cacao in South America 5,400 years ago, underscoring the seed’s radical transformation into today’s Twix bars and M&M candies.

Tests indicate traces of cacao on artifacts from an archaeological site in Ecuador, according to a study published Monday. That’s about 1,500 years older than cacao’s known domestication in Central America.

“It’s the earliest site now with domesticated cacao,” said Cameron McNeil of Lehman College in New York, who was not involved in the research.

The ancient South American civilization likely didn’t use cacao to make chocolate since there’s no established history of indigenous populations in the region using it that way, researchers led by the University of British Columbia in Canada said.

Cacao,chocolate
-A cacao pod hangs from a tree at the Agropampatar chocolate farm co-op in El Clavo, Venezuela. VOA

But the tests indicate the civilization used the cacao seed, not just the fruity pulp. The seeds are the part of the cacao pod used to make chocolate.

Indigenous populations in the upper Amazon region today use cacao for fermented drinks and juices, and it’s probably how it was used thousands of years ago as well, researchers said.

Scientists mostly agree that cacao was first domesticated in South America instead of Central America as previously believed. The study in Nature Ecology & Evolution provides fresh evidence.

Three types of tests were conducted using artifacts from the Santa Ana-La Florida site in Ecuador. One tested for the presence of theobromine, a key compound in cacao; another tested for preserved particles that help archeologists identify ancient plant use; a third used DNA testing to identify cacao.

Chocolate
A light almond cream candy carries the initials for Russell Stover Candies in Kansas City, Kansas. VOA

Residue from one ceramic artifact estimated to be 5,310 to 5,440 years old tested positive for cacao by all three methods. Others tested positive for cacao traces as well, but were not as old.

How cacao’s use spread between South America and Central America is not clear. But by the time Spanish explorers arrived in Central America in the late 1400s, they found people were using it to make hot and cold chocolate drinks with spices, often with a foamy top.

“For most of the modern period, it was a beverage,” said Marcy Norton, a historian at the University of Pennsylvania and author of “Sacred Gifts, Profane Pleasures: A History of Tobacco and Chocolate in the Atlantic World.”

The chocolate drinks in Central America often contained maize and differ from the hot chocolate sold in the U.S. They did not contain milk, Norton said, and when they were sweetened, it was with honey.

 

cocoa, chocolate
A worker holds cocoa beans at SAF CACAO, a export firm in San-Pedro, Ivory Coast, Jan. 29, 2016. VOA

By the 1580s, cacao was being regularly imported into Spain and spread to other European countries with milk being added along the way. It wasn’t until the 1800s that manufacturing advances in the Netherlands transformed chocolate into a solid product, Norton said.

Michael Laiskonis, who teaches chocolate classes the Institute of Culinary Education, said he’s seeing a growing interest in cacao flavors, indicating a return to a time when chocolate wasn’t just an ingredient buried in a candy bar.

Also Read: Consuming Cacao May Improve Vitamin D Intake, Says Study

He said he tries to incorporate chocolate’s past into his classes, including a 1644 recipe that combines Mayan and Aztec versions of drinks with European influences.

“It’s something that’s always been transforming,” he said. (VOA)