Virat Kohli's unbeaten 254 flattens South Africa on Day 2

The Times of India

The Times of India

Author 2019-10-12 10:58:00

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  • Kohli's was a captain's innings of supreme will power and intensity.
  • Kohli concentrated on all aspects of batsmanship: surviving the rough period, mixed defence with offence, stole runs, encourage his partners and deflated the opposition morale.
  • In 39.1 overs, Kohli-Jadeja added 225 runs for the fifth wicket and plundered the last 136 runs in 17.3 overs.
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PUNE: Three-day Test or four-day Test? That's the question Team India posed which South Africa hoped that they would answer on the fifth day.

Replying to India's 601 for five declared in the first innings, South Africa were 36 for three at stumps on the second day of second Test at Gahunje stadium here on Friday.

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Virat Kohli hit a clinical unbeaten double hundred (254 off 336b, 33x4s, 2x6s) and even allowed Ravindra Jadeja to go for his ton (91, 104b, 8x4s, 2x6s). Vice-captain Ajinkya Rahane also scored an ultra-cautious half century (59 off 168 balls).

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The peculiar nature of Test cricket - when you put mountain of runs on the board and ask the opposition to bat for that tricky last hour of the day - was on display.

Kohli's was a captain's innings of supreme will power and intensity. He concentrated on all aspects of batsmanship: surviving the rough period, mixed defence with offence, stole runs, encourage his batting partners and deflated the opposition morale.

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In 39.1 overs, Kohli-Jadeja added 225 runs for the fifth wicket (run rate 5.74). They plundered the last 136 runs in 17.3 overs. Yes, a par score in a T20 game. So ordinary were South Africa and their efforts in big patches.

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If you want to give example of helpless body language, you had to look at the South Africans who were hoping for wickets, errors from India batsmen and less punishment in terms of runs for 156.3 overs of the innings.

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India could score only 159 runs off 56 overs from South Africa pacemen Vernon Philander and Kagiso Rabada. But of 84.3 overs of other three bowlers, they milked almost 400 runs. And then they said in the press conference "there was no such plan as such!"

South Africa panicked under pressure and captain Faf de Plessis changed the batting order sending Theunis de Bruyn, Temba Bavuma and debutant pacer Anrich Nortje (nightwatchman) ahead of himself.

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Though the left-handed batsman played on while attempting to leave the ball close to the off-stump, Umesh did enough by posing consistent questions in the corridor of uncertainty.

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But Shami wasn't to be denied share of the cake as he got Temba Bavuma on the first ball of his spell. The bowler was more confident about his caught behind appeal off a feather touch and the DRS went in his favour.

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