Vastavam web: Superb seam bowling allowed India to rip through South Africa’s batting line-up and seal a 63-run consolation victory on day four of the third and final test at the Wanderers on Saturday.Chasing 241 for victory on a wicket with pace, bounce and prodigious lateral movement, South Africa were on top at 124 for one, but lost their last nine wickets for just 53 runs as India roared back into the contest.
The wickets were shared between the excellent Mohammed Shami (5-28), Ishant Sharma (2-31), Jasprit Bumrah (2-57) and Bhuvneshwar Kumar (1-39).“We required some character playing on a pitch that was very difficult to play on, but our guys showed great guts and determination through the four days,” India captain Virat Kohli said at the post-match presentation.“We took the challenge, we wanted to face it head on. Batting first was something that didn’t go down well with a lot of people, but we knew it would get even more difficult to bat as the game went on.”
The batsmen in particular showed bravery and skill on a surface that at once stage was deemed so dangerous by umpires Ian Gould and Aleem Dar that they suspended play 20 minutes from the close on day three.The key wickets of AB de Villiers (6) and Faf du Plessis (2) followed quickly afterwards, and when the out of form Quinton de Kock was trapped leg before wicket first ball, the home side’s chances diminished.
At one stage India’s rampant seamers picked up six wickets for 17 runs, with only the lone hand of Elgar able to keep them at bay.“India outplayed us in this test, we didn’t take our chances and were sloppy. We weren’t as consistent as in the first two tests,” South African captain Faf du Plessis said.