SA vs IND, 2nd Test, Day 3, Review: South Africa ahead courtesy AB de Villiers

Bumrah scalped a couple of quick wickets in the second innings as the game is hanging in the balance right now.

AB de Villiers
AB de Villiers of the Proteas. (Photo by Lee Warren/Gallo Images/Getty Images)

The second Test between India and South Africa has been at his best so far setting the perfect example of a proper attritional Test cricket. The third day started with both the sides looking to take the advantage in the first innings as the pitch is crumbling quickly. The spinners are expected to take control in the last couple of days as the visitors are banking on R Ashwin to spin the web around the home side. However, it was the skipper Virat Kohli who looked rock solid right through and continued in the same fashion on the third day.

The duo of Hardik Pandya and Kohli strode out to the middle with an aim to take the team closer to the total of their opponents. They looked in no trouble whatsoever as the score moved on quickly in the first half an hour. Soon, Virat brought up his 21st Test century and let a roar out of him while celebrating. He soaked in the applause of the crowd and then again concentrated hard on his game. But then the jubilation followed up with frustration as Pandya was lazy in getting back to the crease and Vernon Philander affected a direct hit.


Ashwin and Kohli lead the fightback

At 209/6, India looked set to concede a lead of more than 100 runs in the first innings. But Ashwin, after being hit on the hand by a Kagiso Rabada bouncer, drove through the covers and off his legs confidently. He raced to 23 off just 15 odd deliveries which brought the deficit down to 100 runs. Both added 71 runs for the seventh wicket but just when the fans were thinking of the lead, Philander struck with the new ball in the very first over.

Virat Kohli, meanwhile, was excellent and continued in the same vein after reaching the milestone. He was never unfazed and just kept on playing his shots also respecting the good deliveries. But even Mohammed Shami couldn’t survive as he edged one to slips off Morne Morkel. Kohli, in the process, reached 150 amazingly as he continued to fight for his team. But soon after lunch, India were bowled out for 307 as their captain was the last man to go perishing in search of quick runs.

With the lead of 28 runs, the hosts would’ve expected to extend their advantage. But Jasprit Bumrah had different ideas as he sent back Aiden Markram and the mighty Hashim Amla by pinning them in front of the stumps. They were reeling two down with only three runs on the board when the genius of AB de Villiers entered. He made batting look so easy with yet another enterprising inning. Dean Elgar, at the other end, fought his way surviving over after over delivered by Ashwin.

The third session surprisingly saw the thunderstorm and lightning followed by heavy rain which halted the play for almost an hour. Even after the play resumed, it was the masterclass from de Villiers which took the honours even as India missed the chance of dismissing Elgar who edged the ball between the keeper and the first slip. But the play stopped again soon due to bad light as the Indian skipper was also not happy with the wet outfield.

98 overs will be played on both the remaining days now as South Africa have extended their lead to 118. They would look to bat India out of the game on Tuesday as the visitors will have to make the statement now with the series on the line.

Brief Scores

South Africa 335 (A Markram 94, H Amla 82; R Ashwin 4/113, I Sharma 3/46) & 90/2 (de Villiers 50*, D Elgar 36; J Bumrah 2/30)

India 307 (V Kohli 153; M Morkel 4/60)

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