India -South Africa First Test – yet another so near yet so far performance from India

In my last post I had expressed my opinion that the Indian batting was doing alright but the bowling was of great concern. I feel there was more evidence in the Test  match. India could only manage six South African wickets in the fourth innings and two of them were run-outs. One might think that the pitch was a bit docile, but it was anything but. There was inconsistent bounce, a few balls kicking up and a some keeping low.

The Indian bowlers should be disappointed that they could not target the “bad” areas in the pitch more consistently. They did very well in the first innings when the pitch was offering a lot of lateral movement, but lacked penetration when that died out in the second innings.

They would be happy that they escaped with a draw considering that one stage South Africa needed just 58 from 14 overs with AB de Villiers and Faf du Plessis still at the crease.  The seamers really held their nerve and Rahane managed to score his second direct hit at a very critical moment to dismiss du Plessis.

Ashwin went wicketless . Ishant Sharma and Zaheer Khan managed just one each and Zaheer went for 4 runs an over, far from what is expected of the lead bowler.  One might say that the South African bowling also looked ineffective against Pujara and Kohli in the second innings. Only when India started pushing for some quick runs did wickets start to tumble. But South Africa did not have their best bowler from the first innings in the second,but India had their full attack.

A lot of questions were asked of the Indian batsmen before the tour.  Can they handle the pace and bounce on South African pitches ? Do they have the technique to keep out the good balls ? Do they have the judgement and patience to leave balls outside the off-stump ? I think it’s fair to say that they have answered most of these questions with a “yes”.

India may not have won the Test, but the team as well as the fans can get of lot of hopefor the futue  from the performance of the batsmen. They have shown that they  can compete in overseas conditions and oppositions will have to do more than just turning up to bowl them out twice.

 

 

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One Response to “India -South Africa First Test – yet another so near yet so far performance from India”

  1. RSJ Says:

    There is only one way to win a test match, you have to take 20 wickets of opponents. So team with weaker bowling team has less chances, specially when your spinners are not clicking and fasters has not much juice in them. The draw was “save honor” exit. Not sure what happen to Sami!

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