Team India decimates South Africa to win their first test at Centurion
Gabba, Lords, Centurion – In that order
Team India became the first Asian team who has defeated South Africa in their fortress. The team definitely came close on certainl occasions but could break the walls of the Centurion. However, this team is different and this team is special. Virat Kohli and his boys play fearless cricket and what they did today is very, very special.
South Africa is no doubt a very good team. They of course don’t have players like Graeme Smith, Hashim Amla or AB De Villiers but there’s no doubt that the team is good enough to get a win in their home conditions. What made it difficult is how good Indian bowlers were. Jasprit Bumrah, Mohammed Shami and Mohammed Siraj were simply brilliant and the Proteas had no chance against them. Shami picked up a fifer in the first innings while Bumrah and Thakur picked two each. In the second innings, the Bumrah-Shami duo picked three each while Siraj and Ashwin picked 2 each. The difference between the two sides has been their bowling and there’s no shadow of a doubt that the Proteas are missing Anrich Nortje in their ranks.
KL Rahul’s century in the first innings set the tone for the match and team India absolutely capitalized on that. The concerns however remain. Other than the openers and Rahane, no one could show their class in the first innings and in the second innings, none of the batsmen could step up. Virat Kohli and Cheteshwar Pujara’s form is a very big concern for team India. The Indian captain is making the same mistakes again and again and he needs to identify his weakness before going for a shot. Playing bowls that are in 5th or 6th stump is Virat’s problem and there’s not a lot he is doing to stop that.
Like Gabba, team India did the unthinkable and defeated South Africa in Centurion. After the last test of the year, it can be said with absolute certainty that team India has been absolutely fantastic in the red ball cricket this year. They did lose the finals of the World Test Series in England against New Zealand but won series against Australia, England, and New Zealand and are leading 2-1 against England and 1-0 against South Africa. Team India is winning the series away from home and Sourav Ganguly’s vision is finally coming to light. After all, the Prince of Calcutta has given us hope and showed us the right path to win a series away from our home.
India won the first match by 113 runs and will be playing the second match of the series from 3rd of January. Amidst all this, the form of certain players will be inspected closely. Kohli, for the second year in a row failed to score a century and with 2022 coming, this should be his New Year resolution for sure. In the post match conference, the captain gave a lot of credit to his bowlers saying, “If we had to face this Indian pace attack, it would be a huge task for us”. Like the pace attack, Kohli also needs to be invincible for India to keep dominating in any form of cricket.
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