A strong fightback from South Africa batters, led by captain Dean Elgar, kept them in the hunt in the second Test match against India, at the Wanderers.

India made a good start on Day 3 but lost their way after the dismissals of Ajinkya Rahane (58) and Cheteshwar Pujara (53). The pair registered half-centuries to take India’s lead past the 100-run mark in the first hour of play. They were dismissed by Kagiso Rabada, who also took the wicket of Rishabh Pant. Apart from Rabada, Marco Jansen and Lungi Ngidi also picked three wickets each while Duanne Olivier took one.

Cheteshwar Pujara and Ajinkya Rahane take a run, South Africa vs India, 2nd Test, Johannesburg, 2nd day, January 4, 2022
Under-fire senior batters Cheteshwar Pujara and Ajinkya Rahane added a lifeline to their respective careers with crucial half-centuries on the third day of second test between South Africa and India in Johanesburg.
Cheteshwar Pujara : Form is temporary but class is permanent and it’s true for Ajinkya Rahane and myself

Hanuma Vihari and Shardul Thakur added 41 for the seventh wicket. Shardul Thakur smashed five fours and a six in a 24-ball 28 batting masterclass. Ravichandran Ashwin (16) and Jasprit Bumrah (7) added for India to finish on 266. South Africa needed 240 to beat India for the first time at Johannesburg.

The hosts came out with a strong response in chase of a challenging 240-run target, South Africa ended day three of the second Test against India at 118 for two on Wednesday. South Africa Skipper Dean Elgar scored 46*, took many blows on his body for the team, and Rassie van der Dussen is unbeaten at 11, hosts need 122 more runs to level up the series against the visitors.

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R Ashwin celebrates the wicket of Keegan Petersen, South Africa vs India, 2nd Test, Johannesburg, 3rd day, January 5, 2021
Ravichandran Ashwin celebrates the wicket of Keegan Petersen.

The Indian bowlers got rid of the South African opener Aiden Markram (34) and Keegan Petersen (28) but India was unable to get any breakthroughs after that. Shardul Thakur took the first wicket for India in the tenth over, and Ravichandran Ashwin became the only second Indian Spinner to get a wicket at the Wanderers after Anil Kumble (17 Wickets).

Brief Scores:

India: 202 and 266 in 60.1 overs (A Rahane 58, C Pujara 53; K Rabada 3/73, M Jansen 3/67, L Ngidi 3/43) lead South Africa: 202 and 118/2 in 40 overs. (D Elgar 46 batting, A Markram 34, R Ashwin 1/14, S Thakur 1/24) by 121 runs.

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By Abhishek Pandey

Non-Aspiring future engineer having many aspirations in life. A lover of cricket and football, an admirer of the GOATs in both games. Solving the jigsaw puzzles of life in my own way to find the treasure of peace. There is only one quote that keeps me going- 'There is no way for being happy, being happy is the only way.'