Centurion Test: India look to bounce back, Proteas eye series win
(4 months ago)
Centurion [South Africa], Jan 13 : After slumping to a moral-sapping defeat in the opening Test, India will look to bounce back when they take on South Africa in the penultimate second Test of the three-match series here at the SuperSport Park on Saturday.
The Virat Kohli-led side suffered a 72-run defeat in the first match in Cape Town to go down 0-1 in the ongoing series against South Africa.
However, the world number one Test side will look to win this match in order to keep their hopes alive of becoming the first side in history to get to ten Test series win in a row with a victory over South Africa.
Meanwhile, India have also never managed to win a Test series on South African soil for the past 25 years. Their best result came during the 2010-11 series, which India drew 1-1.
South Africa, on the other hand, are riding high on confidence after their splendid outing in Cape Town and will aim to wrap the three-match Test series when they head into the second match.
It should be noted that South Africa had enjoyed a winning spree at Centurion like no other venue across this country with 17 wins and just two defeats.
On the eve of the match, South African skipper Faf du Plessis had said that South Africa and India are preparing for 'unknown' Centurion pitch before revealing that they had asked for a pitch with pace and bounce.
Earlier, Newlands groundsman Evan Flint was applauded for producing the seam-friendly wicket in the opening Test, with the highest total in the match being 286 during South Africa's first innings.
The match saw South Africa's Vernon Philander taking career-best figures of six for 42 and finishing with overall nine wickets to eventually bag 'man-of-the-match' award.
The two squads are as follows:
India: Murali Vijay, Shikhar Dhawan, Cheteshwar Pujara, Virat Kohli (captain), Ajinkya Rahane, Rohit Sharma, Wriddhiman Saha (wicket-keeper), Ravichandran Ashwin, Ravindra Jadeja, Mohammed Shami, Ishant Sharma, Jasprit Bumrah, Parthiv Patel, Umesh Yadav, Bhuvneshwar Kumar, Hardik Pandya, Lokesh Rahul.
South Africa: Faf du Plessis (Captain), Hashim Amla, Temba Bavuma, Theunis de Bruyn, Quinton de Kock (wicket-keeper), AB de Villiers, Dean Elgar, Keshav Maharaj, Aiden Markram, Morne Morkel, Chris Morris, Andile Phehlukwayo, Vernon Philander, Kagiso Rabada. Duanne Olivier, Lungi Ngidi.