South Africa bowlers were once again up to the mark, as they restricted India within 135 runs to seal the 1st Test by 72 runs. Indian batsmen failed miserably to tackle the extra pace and bounce, as they sacrificed their wicket.
India missed the services of Ajinkya Rahane in the middle-order, who was India’s highest scorer on the overseas tours.
India skipper Virat Kohli failed to impress on overseas conditions, as he knicked one outside off from Morne Morkel. Rohit Sharma, who returned with a bang in the Sri Lanka series couldn’t impress with the bat, as India fell short of South Africa’s total.
India will have to regroup as a batting unit ahead of the second Test at Centurion starting from 13 January.
Here are the player’s ratings:
Shikhar Dhawan: (3/10)
The swashbuckling opener faced some serious problems in front of short pitch deliveries, as the South African pacers hurled bouncers at him. He got starts in both the digs scoring 16 each; however, failed to convert it into big scores.
It will be a tough challenge for him ahead of the second Test, as KL Rahul is waiting for an opportunity.
Murali Vijay: (2/10)
The opener from Tamil Nadu made a strong comeback after an injury lay-off but surrendered himself in front of quality pace bowling. His scores of one and 13 in the first Test will keep him thinking about how to improve ahead of the next Test.
Cheteshwar Pujara: (4/10)
The best Test batsman India possesses didn’t live up to his expectation, although he did show some resistance in the first innings scoring 26 runs.
However, he was undone by the beauty of South African bowlers. He will have to take the onus on himself if India wants to come back in this series.
Virat Kohli (c): (4.5/10)
If India has to post a competitive total, India skipper Virat Kohli needs to take the responsibility to notch big scores. He got a start in the second dig though but couldn’t convert it. He needs to transform those two figure scores to three figures if India wants to give them a chance in this series.
Rohit Sharma: (3/10)
Rohit Sharma’s inclusion ahead of Ajinkya Rahane came as a surprise to everybody; however, he failed to grab the opportunity. Rohit Sharma came into this series playing big knocks, but couldn’t continue his form in the Rainbow Nation. His place will be in doubt ahead of the next Test, as the Rahane will pose some serious competition to take the spot.
Wriddhiman Saha (wk): (6/10)
Saha was brilliant behind the stumps grabbing ten catches to enter the records books; however, he needs to score some runs with the bat. He had a perfect platform to prove his mettle but couldn’t get going in both the innings.
Ravichandran Ashwin: (6.5/10)
Although Ashwin didn’t have a major role to play with the ball, Ashwin scored some valuable runs with the bat in the second chance but couldn’t take his team home. It will do a whole good to his confidence when he takes the field in the next match.
Hardik Pandya: (8/10)
Pandya is the only batsman to go past fifty and bring some positive intent to the Indian camp. He played an outstanding knock of 93 runs in the first innings and complemented with two wickets in the second innings. He will be eager to help the team’s cause once again in the second match.
Bhuvneshwar Kumar: (7.5/10)
Kumar was exceptional with the ball in the morning session of the first day picking three early wickets. He ended the match with a tally of six wickets and will like to continue his form in the upcoming matches.
Mohammad Shami: (6/10)
Mohammad Shami didn’t have a good start to this Test match but came into the groove, as the match went on. He bowled a superb spell in the morning session of the fourth day to pick three quick wickets, as India reduced South Africa to 130.
Jasprit Bumrah: (6/10)
Debutant Bumrah was a bit outward in the first innings but learned quickly in the second dig to give South African batsmen a tough time. He showed a lot of prospects and can be a strike bowler for India in the upcoming matches.
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