India v South Africa, 4th Test, Delhi, 5th day December 7, 2015

Manjrekar: Kohli's support of talent paid rich dividends

ESPNcricinfo staff
Sanjay Manjrekar looks at how Virat Kohli's leadership boosted the confidence of India's attack on the fifth day and the big gains for the home side after the 3-0 series win against South Africa

India's spinners will finally get the credit they deserve

With South Africa intent on playing an extremely defensive game in the hope of a draw, India's spinners had to prise out the wickets on a track that was gradually easing out. Sanjay Manjrekar credited R Ashwin and Ravindra Jadeja for their relentless pressure.

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Kohli's enthusiasm as captain impressive

As India broke through South Africa's defence to seal a 3-0 series, Manjrekar credited the side's fifth-day success to Virat Kohli's tactics as well, particularly his support for the side's bowlers and his use of Umesh Yadav in the attack. Another facet of Kohli's captaincy in the series that impressed Manjrekar was his enthusiasm to push his team to give their best.

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More self-belief for Umesh under Kohli's captaincy

In the past, Umesh has struggled with accuracy and confidence but his performance in the second innings against South Africa was his best by far, according to Manjrekar. He was accurate and focused and seemed to gain inspiration from Kohli's inputs.

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Rahane's growth; Ashwin and Jadeja's form gains for India

Among the biggest gains for India in the 3-0 series win were R Ashwin's performances as the lead spinner and Ravindra Jadeja's return to form and accuracy. Manjrekar also lauded Ajinkya Rahane's performances in the series and Kohli's ability to push his players to perform better than their potential.

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South Africa batsmen showed unique ability in defence

They may have lost the Test series but Manjrekar said that South Africa's batsmen, particularly Hashim Amla, AB de Villiers and Faf du Plessis, showed a unique quality in the final match in Delhi - the ability to play extreme defensive cricket for long spells.

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