Indian openers KL Rahul and Mayank Agarwal became just the third opening pair from India in Tests to register a 100-run partnership against South Africa in South Africa.
The duo achieved the feat during the ongoing first Test against the hosts at the SuperSport Park in Centurion. The other two instances came back in 2006-07 when Wasim Jaffer and Dinesh Karthik put on 153 in Cape Town and 2010-11 when Gautam Gambhir and Virender Sehwag put on 137 in Centurion.
The pair of Mayank and Rahul is also India’s third different pair in three series the ongoing World Test Championship (WTC) 2021-23 cycle. Rohit Sharma & KL Rahul against England in August, Mayank Agarwal & Shubman Gill against New Zealand in November-December, and now Rahul & Mayank against South Africa.
India in a strong position after opting to bat first
Virat Kohli‘s decision to bat first after winning the toss was expected to backfire. However, the openers reinforced Kohli’s decision and survived the tough opening session before piling on the runs. They ended the first session at 83/0, with Mayank on 46 and Rahul on 29.
Apart from a dropped catch of Mayank, there were no chances offered by the Karnataka duo as they dominated in the first Test. With the clouds clearing up after the Lunch break, batting is expected to get easier and the Indian team will look to get a big first innings total.