After a convincing win in the first Test, team India will hope to continue their winning run when they face South Africa at the MCA Stadium starting from October 10 (Thursday). However, poor record awaits the host in Pune as they have lost their only Test at home in this ground in the last six years.
India were superb during the first Test which is only a testimony of their superlative performance at home. Since 2013, Virat Kohli & Co have won 24 of the 30 Tests they have played in home conditions with only one defeat. And going by their performance in the first match, the dominance is unlikely to end soon.
While Rohit Sharma has been the talking of the Visakhapatnam, Mohammed Shami’s five-wicket haul in the fourth innings was more heartening to see. He has grown from strength to strength and is currently one of the best when it comes to reverse the old ball.
On the other hand, South Africa will want to look at the positives from the last game and hand another defeat to India in Pune. The performance of Dean Elgar and Quinton de Kock will boost their morale and the Proteas will be keen to be consistent with their batting.
However, they will expect a lot more accuracy and incisiveness from the bowlers, particularly in the spin department. The spinners have failed to penetrate and they need to stand up if South Africa wants to save the series and take it to the last match.
Date and Time: India vs South Africa 2019 at the Maharashtra Cricket Association Stadium in Pune, 9:00 AM IST
India have won the toss and opted to bat first against South Africa in Pune.
India: Rohit Sharma, Ravindra Jadeja, Ishant Sharma, Virat Kohli (c), Ajinkya Rahane, Cheteshwar Pujara, Wriddhiman Saha (wk), Ravichandran Ashwin, Mayank Agarwal, Mohammed Shami, Umesh Yadav
South Africa: Vernon Philander, Dean Elgar, Faf du Plessis (c), Theunis de Bruyn, Quinton de Kock (wk), Temba Bavuma, Anrich Nrotje, Aiden Markram, Kagiso Rabada, Keshav Maharaj, Senuran Muthusamy
Here is what the captains said,
We’re batting first. Looks like a hard wicket. Runs on the board and on this surface, the ball will eventually turn here on Day 2 and 3, so Day 1 will be the best time to bat. The players were putting pressure on me to win the toss. With the grass on the pitch and the reverse option on this track, we needed a new seam option. Vihari misses out unfortunately and Umesh Yadav comes into the side.
Faf du Plessis
There is a bit of grass on this morning, but I was asking Virat to teach me the sleight of hand trick to win tosses in India. We’re bringing in Nortje for Piedt, so just a bit of extra pace here. That first innings was positive, that showed that we could score big even in India. A Test debut for any player is a special thing.