April 13, 2024 02:36 (IST)
Follow us:
facebook-white sharing button
twitter-white sharing button
instagram-white sharing button
youtube-white sharing button
Amid unemployment, inflation issues, PM Modi's leadership likely to help his third consecutive term at govt: Survey | AAP to support INDIA bloc 'unconditionally' in UP for Lok Sabha election | Amid threats from Iran, Israel launches massive strike on Gaza | Centre advises citizens to avoid travel to Iran, Israel | Jammu and Kashmir assembly polls soon, statehood to be restored: PM Modi in Udhampur
SAvIND: KL Rahul keeps India in game despite Rabada's fifer Test Cricket
Photo courtesy: X/@BCCI

SAvIND: KL Rahul keeps India in game despite Rabada's fifer

India Blooms News Service | @indiablooms | 27 Dec 2023, 10:41 am

Centurion/UNI: An unbeaten 70 by KL Rahul allowed India to be in a competitive position on a difficult Super Sport Park deck against South Africa on Day 1 of the first Test here on Tuesday.

Another big headline on Tuesday was Kagiso Rabada's 500 international wickets and picking up a five-fer, which included the prized wickets of India skipper Rohit Sharma, Virat Kohli, Shreyas Iyer, Ravichandran Ashwin and Shardul Thakur.

At stumps, India were 208/8 as only 59 overs were possible in a rain-affected day's play. Giving Rahul company was Mohammed Siraj, batting on a duck from 10 balls.

Ever since he came back from the horrific injury that he sustained in the IPL, it was a different Rahul, and it was a delight to see him get the half-century which is like a hundred on this track.

Rahul was a symbol of balance as he leaned to drive pitched-up balls, and stood tall to punch and keep pull shots down while negotiating bouncing balls. He has added a crucial 84 runs from numbers 8 to 10.

After being put into bat, India got off to a positive start as they hammered three boundaries in the first four overs, with Yasashvi Jaiswal tucking and driving Kagiso Rabada and Marco Jansen over the ropes.

India captain Rohit Sharma punched on the backfoot for his first boundary but mistimed his favourite pull-shot straight into the hands of debutant Nandre Burger at fine leg for 5.

Oozing with confidence after taking his maiden Test catch, Burger forced Jaiswal to edge behind the stumps to Verreynne for 17, which was studded with four boundaries.

Burger then sent back Shubman Gill for 2 after the No.3 batsman gloved one down the leg side to Verreynne to take his second catch of the match.

The straight umpire did not rule him out, it was Verreynne who dispelled Bavuma's doubts about going for the DRS and eventually got the decision in South Africa's favour.

India could have been in deep trouble by losing another wicket if the hosts could have held on to two catches in quick succession. Jansen and Tony de Zorzi were the culprits as they dropped Shreyas and Virat, much to India's delight.

Virat and Shreyas capitalised on the lifeline and executed some sparkling shots. Shreyas even smoked a six over deep backward square leg for a six as India went into lunch break at 91/3.

In the post-lunch session, Rabada dismantled India's middle order with a fifer. The visitors started awfully as Rabada castled Shreyas Iyer (31) off a wobbly nipbacker to break a promising 68 runs fourth wicket partnership with Virat Kohli.

A couple of overs later, Rabada produced a beauty, forcing Virat to edge one behind wicketkeeper Kyle Verreynne for 38, when the star batsman was beginning to shape up well.

Hopes then rested on Rahul and Ravichandran Ashwin who came in for injured Ravindra Jadeja, after half of India's batsmen were back into the hut inside 31 overs.

The duo tried to push South Africa to the wall with a few boundaries, but Rabada foiled their intentions. He struck again by bringing Ashwin (8) forward off to a rising spitting cobra which brushed the shoulder of the bat to offer jumping substitute Mulder in the third slip.

The plucky Shardul Thakur and Rahul fought back to put together a crucial 43-run partnership for the 7th wicket before Rabada returned to accomplish his five-fer.

With the tail hanging around him, Rahul opened up as he smashed Burger for a boundary and a six off consecutive balls to get to his fifty.

Jansen got his first wicket by cleaning up Jasprit Bumrah, but Rahul continued to get vital boundaries. Before he could spell more doom, the heavens opened up forcing the umpires to call off the day's play.

Brief scores: India 208/8 (KL Rahul 70*, Virat Kohli 38; Kagiso Rabada 5/44) vs South Africa.

Support Our Journalism

We cannot do without you.. your contribution supports unbiased journalism

IBNS is not driven by any ism- not wokeism, not racism, not skewed secularism, not hyper right-wing or left liberal ideals, nor by any hardline religious beliefs or hyper nationalism. We want to serve you good old objective news, as they are. We do not judge or preach. We let people decide for themselves. We only try to present factual and well-sourced news.

Support objective journalism for a small contribution.