JUST TOO EASY
Pune, October 13
The Indian juggernaut continued to roll as the hosts humiliated South Africa by an innings and 137 runs in the second Test to clinch a record 11th consecutive series victory at home.
After being asked to follow on in the morning, the struggling South Africa batsmen surrendered yet again against the dominant Indian bowlers.The win, coming on the fourth day, has consolidated India’s top position in the World Test Championship table. India now have 200 points, 140 more than second-placed New Zealand. Virat Kohli secured his 30th win as Test captain, out of the 50 he has led India in.
South Africa lasted 67.2 overs in their second innings, bowled out for 189 just after the tea break. The five-pronged Indian bowling unit did a great job, with comeback man Umesh Yadav claiming 3 for 22. Ravindra Jadeja (3/52), Ravichandran Ashwin (2/45), Mohammed Shami (1/34) and Ishant Sharma (1/17) played their part in the win, too.As in the first innings, Vernon Philander (37) and Maharaj (22) frustrated India, delaying the inevitable by adding 56 runs for the eighth wicket in 21.2 overs. Once Philander was caught down the leg-side by Wriddhiman Saha, the resistance was over in a flash.
After Kohli asked the visitors to follow on in the morning, Dean Elgar (48 off 72 balls) put up a stiff resistance before Ravichandran Ashwin (2/45) snuffed him out in what was a decisive blow to the Proteas.
After going wicketless in the first innings, Ishant Sharma (1/17) struck with the very second delivery of the morning, a full-length in-dipper that struck Aiden Markram’s pads (0) and umpire Nigel Llong had no hesitation in raising his finger. Markram didn’t review the decision, but TV replays showed the ball was missing the leg-stump.
For the second time in the match, Theunis de Bruyn (8) fell to a spectacular catch by Saha — as the batsman glanced Yadav fine and looked back, to his horror he saw a flying Saha pulling off a stunning catch.
Elgar and skipper Faf du Plessis (5 off 54 balls) added 49 runs for the third wicket, with du Plessis batting with extreme patience, presenting a dead bat to practically every ball. However, the ultra-defensive tactic didn’t work for a long period as the captain fell trying to drive an Ashwin off-break. Saha’s sharp reflexes were again on show as he pouched the catch on the fourth attempt.
After perhaps losing his concentration, Elgar tried to play a lofted shot but could not clear Yadav, who ran back from mid-off position to take a fine running catch. Quinton de Kock was the next to go after he tried to slog Jadeja, only to be bowled, reducing the visitors to 79/5. Temba Bavuma did well to get 38 off 63 balls, including a six, before he fell to Jadeja. Senuran Muthusamy was removed by Shami, and at 129/7, the end was near. It was delayed by Maharaj and Philander, but not for very long. — PTI
INDIA 1st inn601/5 Decl
S Africa 1st inn275
S Africa 2nd inn (Following on)
A Markram lbw b I Sharma0
D Elgar c Yadav b Ashwin48
T de Bruyn c Saha b Yadav8
F du Plessis c Saha b Ashwin5
T Bavuma c Rahane b Jadeja38
Q de Kock b Jadeja5
S Muthusamy c R Sharma b Shami9
V Philander c Saha b Yadav37
K Maharaj lbw b Jadeja22
K Rabada c R Sharma b Yadav4
A Nortje not out0
Extras: (b-8, lb-3, w-2)13
Total: (All out, 67.2 overs)189
FoW: 1-0, 2-21, 3-70, 4-71, 5-79, 6-125, 7-129, 8-185, 9-189
Result: India win by innings & 137 runs
Man of the Match: Virat Kohli
200 Points for India in the World Test Championship table. They are 140 points ahead of their nearest rival, New Zealand
11 Consecutive Test series wins for India at home — the longest streak for any side. The previous best was 10, with Australia achieving it twice: 1994 to 2001 and then between 2004 and 2008. India’s success streak began with the 4-0 win in the Border-Gavaskar Trophy in 2012-13
0 Bigger Test wins for India vs South Africa than the victory by an innings and 137 runs in Pune. The previous biggest was by an innings and 57 runs at Eden Gardens in 2009-10. This was the second innings defeat for South Africa in this decade and both have come against India
1ST India skipper — Kohli — to enforce the follow-on against SA. England were the last side to enforce the follow-on against the Proteas, in July 2008 at Lord’s
30 Wins for India under Kohli’s captaincy, in 50 Tests. Only two captains have had more wins than Kohli in their first 50 Tests in charge. Steve Waugh had won 37 Tests while Ricky Ponting won 35. Kohli has 17 wins in 23 home games and 13 in 27 away Tests
54.08 The difference in averages of fast bowlers of India and SA in this series. While India’s pacers have averaged 21.75, the visiting pacemen have an average of 75.84 runs per wicket
35.80 Average of South Africa’s bottom five partnerships in this series, including 5 50-plus stands. The top-5 batsmen have averaged just 18.50, with just one partnership of over 50