India captain Virat Kohli has every reason to be confident his team can take a historic Test series victory in South Africa when they face the hosts in the second Test at the Wanderers on Monday. Stage. “It’s a ground we all love to play on and we’re looking forward to it,” Kohli said after India won the first test at Centurion on Thursday by 113 runs. The numbers confirm Kohli’s optimism. India has yet to be beaten in a test match at South Africa’s premier cricket stadium and has a record of two wins and three draws since their first tour of South Africa in 1992/93.
Despite the Wanderers being known as a terrain favoring fast bowlers – which should have put India at a disadvantage on some of their previous tours, before the emergence of their powerful current bowling attack – India has performed consistently well in Johannesburg.
The ground has very happy memories of being part of the Indian tour celebration.
New coach Rahul Dravid made his first Test century in a tie in 1996/97 and 10 years later led India to their first Test win in South Africa.
Kohli gave a masterclass in batting when he made 119 and 96 in a high-scoring draw in 2013/14 to enable India to give the hosts a seemingly impossible 458-run goal to win.
However, in that match South Africa came close to beating India for the only time in Johannesburg, 450 for eight in a dramatic draw.
Kohli then led India to victory on a subpar field four seasons ago, a win he has labeled a “milestone” and which gave the squad the confidence to take a series win in Australia in January last year.
They also lead England 2-1 with the final Test – canceled last year due to covid in the Indian camp – to be played later in 2022.
Kohli, Cheteshwar Pujara and Ajinkya Rahane all made crucial runs on a field that was shut down at one point as conditions were deemed dangerous, while Mohammed Shami, one of the heroes of the Centurion victory, scored five for 28 in the second turns.
A series win in South Africa remains a final frontier for India, which now has the chance to cap a historic triumph with a match left.
India was superior in all divisions of Centurion, although South Africa’s fast bowlers came back strong after a poor first day.
The home side’s hitting was insufficient against a well-disciplined Indian bowling attack.
The middle order is vulnerable in the absence of the now retired Quinton de Kock, as the opening batsmen, captain Dean Elgar and Aiden Markram, have failed to hold together after the second left of an innings in South Africa’s last three Tests .
The magnitude of the defeat in the first Test has given the home side several headaches.
Elgar hinted at a change in batting order and there are several permutations that are likely to be discussed.
Kyle Verreynne is expected to succeed De Kock as wicketkeeper batsman, but South Africa will question whether another specialist batsman should be added instead of all-rounder Wiaan Mulder.
As is often the case with the Wanderers, South Africa could consider opting for an all-speed attack, with left-arm spinner Keshav Maharaj having played on the ground in just two of the possible six tests, one of which – against Sri Lanka last season – he was not called up to bowl.
India, meanwhile, has the luxury of considering whether to mess with a winning team.
South Africa: Dean Elgar (capt), Aiden Markram, Sarel Erwee, Keegan Petersen, Rassie van der Dussen, Temba Bavuma, Kyle Verreynne (wkt), Ryan Rickelton, Wiaan Mulder, Marco Jansen, Keshav Maharaj, Kagiso Rabada, Duanne Olivier, Lungi Ngidi, Glenton Helmsman.
india: Virat Kohli (capt), KL Rahul, Mayank Agarwal, Cheteshwar Pujara, Ajinkya Rahane, Risabh Pant (wkt), Ravichandran Ashwin, Shardul Thakur, Mohammed Shami, Jasprit Bumrah, Mohammed Siraj.
referees: Marais Erasmus, Allahuddien Paleker (both RSA).
TV Referee: Adrian Holdstock (RSA).
Match Referee: Andy Pyrcroft (ZIM).
Topics mentioned in this article