Tuesday, 23 January, 2018

IND 4/0 at lunch; SA bowled out for 335

Faf du Plessis South Africa skipper Faf du Plessis in action during the Cape Town Test
Marlene Weaver | 14 January, 2018, 16:03

South Africa ended Day One on 269/6, surrendering a position of strength after being 246/3 at one stage. The South African line-up enjoys the battle of being on a surface where everything except the crowd is against them. South Africa's score then was 282 for 7. Ashwin's three wickets have already had some impact but exactly how much of a say both he and Keshav Maharaj will have on this game may ultimately affect the assessment of groundsman Bryan Bloy's maiden Test strip.

India vs South Africa, 2nd Test, Day 2 in Centurion, latest updates: Ishant's return to the attack in place of Pandya does get India an immediate result as the latter takes a fine catch at deep square-leg off a pull by Rabada, which is followed by a flashy celebration. "You need to find the flawless balance to do well in South Africa especially where there is more bounce", he said.

Indian skipper Virat Kohli yesterday said that the players need to put in more efforts as the team can not afford to play loose shots. In the end he had to run back straight to the dressing room without scoring.

Meanwhile, du Plessis took South Africa past 300 with a boundary off Ashwin and soon after brought up his half-century with a couple off Pandya. This included the dismissals of Hashim Amla and Vernon Philander. Morkel has played at the venue since the start of his career and knows how to make the bounce on offer work for him. That really helps particularly the batsmen to get used to the bounce of the wicket.

He affected the brilliant run out of Cheteshwar Pujara in an early glimpse of his athleticism.

Burning oil tanker sinks with all 32 crew members confirmed dead
The tanker was carrying 136,000 tonnes of ultra-light crude but Chinese officials say there is no major slick. There are 13 vessels near where the collision took place, including two Japanese ships and a South Korean one.

Initial signs were that the pitch at Centurion wouldn't be as hard to bat on as the seam-friendly track in Cape Town where South Africa's 286 in the first innings was the highest total of the match.

India fought back in the last session in which 37 overs were bowled, 87 runs scored and 4 wickets were taken.

South Africa, meanwhile, look set to once again pick a four-pronged pace attack, although they have to replace the injured Dale Steyn. With the surface expected to bake and deteriorate under the harsh sun as the match wears on, spin may play a big part and that means both teams will retain their lone spinner from the previous game. While Morris offers pace, he has not played a first-class game since picking up a back injury in England in August.

Ashwin also claimed the wicket of opener Dean Elgar (31) as the left-hander stroked a delivery into the body of silly point Murali Vijay, who reacted brilliantly to grasp the ball as it rebounded off him.

Markram also thanked Indian skipper Virat Kohli who complimented his knock.

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