Ken Borland
Sports Journalist
2 minute read
3 Jan 2022
6:04 pm

SA’s quick bowlers put Proteas on top against India in second Test

Ken Borland

Marco Jansen picked up four wickets, while Kagiso Rabada and Duanne Olivier got three each.

Aiden Markram (right) and Marco Jansen of the Proteas celebrate the wicket of Rishabh Pant of India during day one of the second Test between the teams at the Wanderers on Monday. Picture: Lee Warren/Gallo Images

South Africa’s four-pronged fast bowling attack snuffed out India’s batsmen in two-and-a-half sessions on the first day of the second Test at the Wanderers on Monday, but then the Proteas own top-order weaknesses were put through a strenuous examination by the tourists’ powerful pace trio.

India, having won the toss and batted, were bowled out for 202 as Marco Jansen took 4/31 and Kagiso Rabada and Duanne Olivier claimed the other six wickets.

South Africa then reached 35/1 at stumps, with Aiden Markram failing again as he was trapped lbw by Mohammed Shami for seven. It meant Keegan Petersen (14*) again came to the crease inside the first five overs, but he did well to survive to the close with captain Dean Elgar (11*).

The Proteas again made a slow start with the new ball as India openers Lokesh Rahul and Mayank Agarwal put on 36 in the first hour. It was Lungi Ngidi who created the first feelings of pressure with two maidens in his first four overs and Jansen reaped the benefits as he had Agarwal caught behind for 26 with the first ball after morning drinks.

Olivier produced a fiery second spell that saw him remove Cheteshwar Pujara (3) and Ajinkya Rahane (0) with successive deliveries as India stumbled to lunch on 53/3.

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Opener Rahul, captaining India for the first time in the absence of Virat Kohli, who withdrew just before the toss due to back problems, seems to have batted for weeks in this series already, and, following his crucial century in the first Test, he occupied the crease for three-and-a-half hours on Monday, scoring 50 before he was athletically caught by Rabada at the fine leg boundary off Jansen.

Rassie van der Dussen also took a spectacular one-handed catch at short-leg to remove Hanuma Vihari for 20 off Rabada.

A fiery 46 off 50 balls by Ravichandran Ashwin lifted India to respectability, but the rest of the Proteas pacemen were just too hot for the batsmen.

Markram seems to have lost his old technical assurance against the new ball as he planted the front leg and tried to play what was basically a straight ball from Shami far too square on the leg-side.

But Elgar was playing with his usual defiant composure and sensible shot-selection as he withstood 57 deliveries, and Petersen also looked focused for 39 balls, except when he slashed at Jasprit Bumrah when he had 12 and was fortunate to be dropped by wicketkeeper Rishabh Pant, high to his right.

India suffered a blow when Mohammed Siraj hobbled from the field in the penultimate over, clutching his hamstring.