South Africa defied India’s mighty pace attack as they ended up scoring 118/2 when the Stumps was called on Day 3 of the second Test match in Johannesburg. India had set a target of 240 which looked tricky when the hosts came out to bat, but a dogged top order made sure it was South Africa who walk off the ground as clear favourites.
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Skipper Dean Elgar led from the front as he did here four years ago against the same opposition. This time, he would like to be on the winning side. Coming to his batting, Elgar forged a dogged resistance, kept his calm despite being sledged heavily and went on about his day. He scored 46 off 121 balls and was very well supported by his fellow opener Aiden Markaram (31 off 38 balls) before he was dismissed off Shardul Thakur. Despite the breakthrough, India couldn’t convert into another one as Keegan Petersen then accounted for 28 off 44, before Ashwin got the visitors the breakthrough. By the time stumps were called in, South Africa were firmly placed. Barring some odd balls, India’s bowling looked ineffective; nonetheless, it was the Proteas who batted really well.
Earlier attacking half-centuries from Ajinkya Rahane and Cheteshwar Pujara and some useful knocks from Hanuma Vihari and Shardul Thakur lower down the order saw India setting South Africa a stiff target of 240 to win the ongoing 2nd Test to win in Johannesburg on Wednesday.
Rahane top-scored with 58 while Pujara made 53 before Vihari added an unbeaten 40 as he guided the Indian tail the tourists were bowled out for 266 in 60.1 overs. For South Africa, Lungi Ngidi, Marco Jansen and Kagiso Rabada took three wickets each while Duanne Olivier took one.
With Rahane and Pujara getting the day underway with a century stand, South Africa endured a ordinary first hour of play as they kept leaking boundaries. The under-pressure duo registered half-centuries apiece before Rabada led the fightback sending them back to the dressing room in quick succession.
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