Jasprit Bumrah shrugged off his critics with one of his best five-for in the traditional format as the Indian fast bowling unit gave the team a slight lead over South Africa on the second day of the third and final Test on Wednesday. Bumrah (23.3-8-42-5) was at the center of India’s swift and brutal counter-attack as he took his seventh five-wicket haul with fine complementary works from Mohammed Shami (16-4-39-2) and Umesh Yadav. (16-3-64-2) which helped them bundle out the Proteas for 210.
India’s 13-run lead was less about the quantity and more about the psychological advantage they garnered and despite losing Mayank Agarwal (7) and KL Rahul (10) cheaply, the visitors were at a reasonable clip. Scored and reached for 2 for 57. on the stump.
Captain Virat Kohli (14 batting) and Cheteshwar Pujara (9 batting), with cumulative experience of 194 Tests, are responsible for taking the team to winning totals.
And though at times the figures hold little or no relevance, Kohli won’t be too sad to know that India have never lost a Test match in which their leading strike bowler took five wickets.
It was a day when Kohli’s captaincy acumen was worthy of praise as he made relevant bowling changes at the right time, broke into the micro-field and took his 100th catch in Test cricket.
But someone who will be really smiling at the end of the day is Bumrah, who had a forgettable game at the Wanderers and faced a fair amount of criticism for bowling too little based on his strength.
There were analyzes showing how his strike-rate (wickets per delivery) had doubled since his back injury, but on Wednesday, he showed that he is the real X-factor of skipper Kohli, the man who was a Differentiates between good and world class. Party.
Aiden Markram’s ball was pitched in a shed outside off-stump and looked like it was going straight, but suddenly embarrassed the South African opener, who had put his hand on the shoulder.
Whenever Markram would watch the replays, he would find that Bumrah made him feel inadequate when he found out where his off-stump was.
That day, Bumrah changed the length a bit and made it a bit fuller on the off-stump and off-stump channel line. The length and bounce was such that the batsmen were confused as to whether he would bounce over the stumps or hit the stumps.
One such ball got South Africa’s best performer Keegan Pietersen (72 off 166 balls) as it was kicking awkwardly from length but it was enough for the batsman and Cheteshwar Pujara hit second slip. I accepted this offer.
But credit should also go to Shami, who took two wickets in three balls to destabilize the Proteas after Pietersen and Rassie van der Dussen (21) added 67 for the fourth wicket in the post-lunch session.
If Umesh set up the session with a conventional outswinger that saw van der Dussen dismiss Kohli at second slip, Shami struck Temba Bavuma (28) and Kyle in the 56th over with two ideal Test match deliveries. Removed Verene(0).
The delivery had everything, with just enough pace with a straight seam and fuller pitching on the off stump.
Bavuma is caught short by a diving Kohli while Rishabh Pant takes a smart take to remove his opposite number.
At the stroke of tea, Bumrah sets up his score with Marco Jensen sending his off-stump for a walk.
The best part of the session was skipper Kohli’s adjustment, when he decided to stand a few steps ahead of first slip after realizing that the ball was not moving completely at second slip.
Several times Shardul Thakur (6-1-21-0) found the outside edge of Pietersen’s bat, but on both occasions the ball fell in front of skipper Kohli at first slip.
The buoyancy available on the Newlands track is not as fast as it was in the Centurion and the Wanderers which belong to the Highveld region.
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