Ajinkya Rahane’s brilliant ton and a bowling performance that was par-excellence ensured that India had total command over proceedings in the 4th Test match against South Africa in Delhi. After posting a challenging first innings total of 334, the hosts bowled South Africa out for a paltry 121. Left-arm spinner Ravindra Jadeja was the destroyer-in-chief and received great support from fellow spinner R Ashwin and seamer Umesh Yadav. India still have a lead of 213 runs and would look to wrap this game quickly.
Ajinkya Rahane scores his first Test hundred at home:
Ajinkya Rahane and Ravichandran Ashwin resumed the Indian innings from 231-7 and the former brought up his 4th Test hundred off 180 balls. The pair added 98 runs for the 8th wicket and took the team close to the 300-run mark. However, Rahane could not bat through the innings as he was dismissed for 127 by Imran Tahir. A loose drive off a googly ended up straight into AB de Villiers’ hands at cover.
Ashwin continued to bat with great concentration and the right-hander brought up his fifty with a six off Imran Tahir’s bowling. His cameo of 56 runs from 140 balls was put to an end by Kyle Abbott. The pacer then completed his five-wicket haul after getting Ishant Sharma LBW and India were bowled out for 334.
Ravindra Jadeja triggers South Africa’s collapse after steady start:
The opening pair of Dean Elgar and Temba Bavuma started well and got South Africa off the mark cautiously. Elgar (17) edged an outgoing delivery from Umesh Yadav to Wriddhiman Saha behind the stumps. At Tea, the visitors were 38-1
Virat Kohli introduced Ravindra Jadeja into the attack and the accurate left-armer did not take long to make his presence felt. He single-handedly tore apart the South African top order with crucial wickets of Bavuma (22), Faf du Plessis (0) and Hashim Amla (3). Yadav and Ishant Sharma then picked up the wickets of JP Duminy and Dane Vilas to reduce the visitors to a miserable 79-6. South Africa never recovered from that position and barring AB de Villiers, none of the batsmen looked even close to comfortable on the turning Kotla wicket.
De Villiers battled hard during his two-hour stay at the crease and scored 42 runs off 78 balls. Sadly he did not receive any support from the other end and eventually lost his wicket to Ravindra Jadeja. A well-judged catch by Ishant Sharma ensured that the South African limited overs captain made his way back to the hut. R Ashwin cleaned up Imran Tahir and the visitors were done and dusted for 121. India chose not to enforce the follow-on and will bat on Day 3.
India 1st innings: 334/10 (Ajinkya Rahane 127, R Ashwin 56, Kyle Abbott 5-40) vs South Africa 1st innings: 121/10 (AB de Villiers 42, Ravindra Jadeja 5-30)
South Africa are 213 runs behind.