The buildup to the India vs South Africa second Test in Cape Town was all about the capitulation of the visitors in the first Test. After a loss by an innings and 32 runs in Centurion, the odds were stacked against the Rohit Sharma-led Indian cricket team. However, it did not take long for the Indian cricket team to dish out a cold revenge – only 107 overs to be precise. In less than five sessions, India won the match by seven wickets and drew the two-match series 1-1, their first in South Africa in 13 years.
With that it is now the shortest Test ever (in terms of number of balls bowled) in 147 years of the format’s history which delivered a result.
Before this, the shortest Test with a result was played between Australia and South Africa in 1932 in Melbourne. That match saw only 109.2 overs (656 balls) with Australia winning the match. The second Test between India and South Africa saw 642 balls.
Talking about the Day 2 of the second Test, Aiden Markram scored the most combative hundred of his career but a vintage Jasprit Bumrah morning spell kept India firmly on course for a series-levelling win against South Africa at lunch on day two of the second Test on Thursday. Markram threw caution to the wind as he smashed his way to 106 off just 103 balls, singlehandedly steering Proteas to 176 all out in 36.5 overs at stroke of lunch and leaving India with a victory target of 79 on a spicy pitch. India reached the target with seven wickets to spare.
The match is almost certain to finish by tea time and possibly will be the shortest Test match (in terms of overs bowled).
The ball didn’t fly off the surface as much as it did on the opening day but with enough juice available to get movement off the surface, Bumrah (6/61 in 13.5 overs) from his back of length approach in the first essay reverted to a more traditional fuller length deliveries to set the alarm bells ringing for the Proteas.
This was his ninth five-wicket haul in Test cricket.
Sensing that he could soon run out of partners once David Bedingham (11) edged one behind the stumps and Kyle Verreynne misjudged the length while going for an unnecessary pull-shot, Markram started attacking the inexperienced Mukesh Kumar (2/56 in 10 overs) and Prasidh Krishna (1/27 in 4 overs), who has been the weakest link in India’s pace attack in his debut series.
With Indian skipper Rohit Sharma rightly setting an attacking field, Markram, found it easy to muscle the balls through the gaps as he hit 17 fours and two mighty sixes off Prasidh.
In the morning, a vintage Bumrah was in full bloom on a tailor-made surface.
Starting at 62 for three, South Africa quickly lost their middle-order to be 111 for 7 before Markram took charge in a 51-run stand with Rabada where he launched into every Indian bowler.
It finally took first innings hero Mohammed Siraj (1/31) to induce a mistimed heave from Markram, ensuring the lead didn’t cross the 100-run mark.
With PTI inputs
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