South Africa had the upper hand on day two as the tourists were bundled out for a mere 209 runs and trailed the hosts by 77 runs in the first innings. Vernon Philander and Kagiso Rabada were the picks of the bowlers for South Africa as they both picked up three wickets each. For India, Hardik Pandya was the standout performer as he helped India bail out of trouble and helped India posts a respectable score.

Hardik Pandya
Image Courtesy: Twitter

However, the hosts dominated the tourists throughout the day, and the Indian batsmen struggled against the pace and bounce in the African pitches. Bhuvneshwar Kumar and Cheteshwar Pujara played helpful innings to take and made the bowlers toil for their wickets.

Let’s have a look at the three turning points on day one.

  1. Cheteshwar Pujara falls just after the lunch break 

    Vernon Philander
    South African bowler Vernon Philander (L) celebrates the dismissal of Indian batsman Cheteshwar Pujara (R) during the second day of the first Test cricket match between South Africa and India at Newlands cricket ground on January 6, 2018, in Cape Town, South Africa. / AFP PHOTO / GIANLUIGI GUERCIA (Photo credit should read GIANLUIGI GUERCIA/AFP/Getty Images)

Indian batsmen Rohit Sharma and Cheteshwar Pujara started the day with a cautious approach, but Sharma lost his wicket in the first session to Rabada. Pujara, on the other hand, looked solid before going into the lunch break. Pujara looked good for a big score in the first innings but lost his wicket on the very first ball after the lunch break as he edged one to slips off Philander’s delivery. His wicket caused a mini collapse in the Indian batting line up as the tourists lost two more quick wickets.

  1. Hardik Pandya unleashes counter-attacking punch
Hardik Pandua, South Africa Vs India, Bhuvneshwar Kumar,
Hardik Pandya changed the gear. Photo Credit: Getty Images.

India was reduced to 92/7 after the lunch break and looked like conceding a huge lead in the first innings with Hardik Pandya and Bhuvneshwar Kumar at the crease. Pandya started attacking the South African bowlers and pushed them on the back foot with his counter attacking style of play. He was supported well by Kumar who took 34 balls to open his account and scored 25 off 86 balls. The duo was involved in a 99-run stand for the ninth wicket. Pandya fell agonizingly close to his second Test hundred on 93 while cutting a wide delivery by Rabada. He took India to a respectable total of 209 as India trailed by 77 runs.

  1. Pandya removes both South African openers
Hardik Pandya
Indian bowler Hardik Pandya (R) celebrates the dismissal of South African batsman Aiden Markram (not in picture) during the second day of the first Test cricket match between South Africa and India at Newlands cricket ground on January 6, 2018, in Cape Town. / AFP PHOTO / GIANLUIGI GUERCIA (Photo credit should read GIANLUIGI GUERCIA/AFP/Getty Images)

Both Dean Elgar and Aiden Markram dominated the Indian bowling in the second innings as Markram played some attacking shots. Kumar and Jasprit Bumrah both failed to pick up early wickets but Hardik Pandya who had a brilliant day with the bat removed both the openers in his back to backovers.

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