Wasteful India let Proteas off the hook in second test

Bhuvneshwar Kumar

Bhuvneshwar Kumar

South Africa were dismissed for 335 fourteen minutes before lunch on the second day of the second Sunfoil Test against India here on Sunday morning. They managed to, however, reach a mark of 335 before they were bowled out by India.

Openers Murali Vijay (four) and Lokesh Rahul will resume in the afternoon on a slow wicket that is uncharacteristic of the venue, but will provide bounce and is likely to quicken up over the next two days. It was bowler Mohammed Shami's 100th Test wicket, making him just sixth Indian pace bowler to achieve that landmark, though it must be noted that his strike rate was better than anyone else, who's done so for that country. A rash of missed chances frustrated India somewhat during a 42-run eighth-wicket stand between du Plessis and Kagiso Rabada, but they created enough chances in an improved bowling performance for the let-offs to not cost them too much.

Offspinner Ravichandran Ashwin took 4-113 and wrapped up the South African innings when Morkel was caught at long off. Ishant Sharma picked two wickets on day 2 of the match.

The second new ball was due but Indian captain Virat Kohli persisted with Ashwin and was rewarded when De Kock edged Ashwin to Kohli at slip to be out first ball. Then he charged out of his crease, slogged, and miscued one high over the point region.

As on day one, India's tight lines in the opening hour made scoring hard for the batsmen as South Africa managed just 23 runs in that period. Converging without communicating clearly, Hardik Pandya - who got his hands to the ball - and Shami fluffed up the opportunity.

The other change was wicketkeeper Wriddhiman Saha, who was ruled out due to a strain, and Parthiv Patel was included is his place. Soon after, even he enjoyed a slice of luck with Parthiv putting down an edge off Ashwin.

The end may have come quicker, with Rabada dropped off successive Ashwin deliveries when South Africa was 289-7.

Ishant then returned, sending Pandya to the square-leg boundary, and a bit of athleticism from the latter sent back Rabada after he miscued a hook. Soon after, he had du Plessis out bowled with a full one.

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