South Africa v India, 3rd Test, Cape Town January 1, 2011

Fine venue for Kallis and Steyn

Most of the South African team have good records in Cape Town, and it has also been a favourable venue for Sachin Tendulkar
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Despite the 87-run defeat in Durban which has swung the momentum away from them, South Africa will be reasonably upbeat about their chances for the third Test, as the match will be played in Cape Town, a venue where South Africa have lost to no team other than Australia since their readmission to international cricket. In 21 Tests at Newlands during this period, South Africa won 14 and lost three, all of them to Australia - in 1994, 2002 and 2006. Their win-loss ratio of 4.66 is second-best among all their home venues. South Africa's recent record here is equally impressive - in the last nine Tests, since the beginning of 2005, they have won six and lost only one.

India's record isn't as good: they drew the first time they played here, in 1993, but lost the next two matches, in 1997 and 2007.

South Africa and India in Cape Town Tests
Team Tests Won Lost Drawn
South Africa 21 14 3 4
India 3 0 2 1

In Durban a couple of South African batsmen had poor records, but in Cape Town, almost everyone has done well. Apart from AB de Villiers, all their batsmen, including Mark Boucher, average more than 40.

Jacques Kallis leads the way with six centuries in 17 Tests, including hundreds in each of his last two matches. Graeme Smith and Ashwell Prince have also impressed, with averages in the late 50s. Smith will have pleasant memories of his last innings at this ground, a splendid 183 against England in the first week of 2010. Prince failed in that match, scoring 0 and 15, but he made 150 against Australia in 2009, which is one of his two centuries here. de Villiers is the one batsman with a below-par record here, but his only century at this venue came recently, when he scored 163 against Australia in 2009.

South African batsmen in Cape Town Tests
Batsman Tests Runs Average 100s/ 50s
Jacques Kallis 17 1602 66.75 6/ 8
Ashwell Prince 9 599 59.90 2/ 2
Graeme Smith 11 1117 58.78 3/ 6
Mark Boucher 15 678 42.37 1/ 4
Hashim Amla 7 486 40.50 1/ 2
AB de Villiers 9 453 32.35 1/ 1

After twin failures in Durban, which remains one of his worst Test venues, Sachin Tendulkar returns to a ground where he has done much better - in each of his three Tests in Cape Town, Tendulkar has scored at least a half-century, and averages almost 69. His best innings here, which is also among his best Test hundreds, came in 1997, when he scored a sparkling 169 off 254 balls and added 222 for the sixth wicket with Mohammad Azharuddin after India had slumped to 58 for 5.

There hasn't been much cheer for the other batsmen, though: Rahul Dravid has a highest of 47 in four innings, while VVS Laxman's best in as many attempts is an unbeaten 35.

Indian batsmen in Cape Town
Batsman Tests Runs Average 100s/ 50s
Sachin Tendulkar 3 329 65.80 1/ 2
Rahul Dravid 2 90 22.50 0/ 0
Virender Sehwag 1 44 22.00 0/ 0
VVS Laxman 2 54 18.00 0/ 0

Most of South Africa's current bowling attack has enjoyed the conditions at Newlands too. Dale Steyn has consistently been among the wickets here, averaging six per game in his last five matches. He hasn't taken a single five-for here, but has taken four in an innings on five occasions, including once against India in 2007. Morne Morkel took a five-for in his only Test here, and even Pul Harris has done well here, taking six in an innings against Australia in 2009.

South African bowlers in Port Elizabeth Tests
Bowler Tests Wickets Average Strike rate 5WI/ 10WM
Morne Morkel 1 6 21.00 50.0 1/ 0
Dale Steyn 6 33 21.78 43.2 0/ 0
Paul Harris 5 20 28.20 63.3 1/ 0
Jacques Kallis 14 29 32.34 66.6 0/ 0

Harris' stats are particularly creditable since spinners haven't generally done well at Newlands. In Tests since 2000, they've conceded more than 40 runs for each of their 105 wickets, with only two five-wicket hauls. (Apart from Harris, Shane Warne is the only one to have achieved it in the last ten years.) Fast bowlers have been more successful, averaging less than 33 per wicket. (For a detailed look at the performances of fast bowlers at this ground, click here.)

Pace and spin in Cape Town since 2000
  Wickets Average Strike rate 5WI/ 10WM
Pace 311 32.85 62.1 8/ 0
Spin 105 40.45 76.7 2/ 0

MS Dhoni has lost the toss 13 times in his last 14 Tests, but if past stats are any indication, he might not mind losing the toss this time: of the last 11 Tests which have produced a decisive result since 2000, eight have been won by the team which lost the toss. Captains have chosen to bat first in 11 out of 14 Tests during this period, but more recently the stats are even: in the last six Tests, three times the captain winning the toss has fielded.

In terms of average runs per wicket in each innings, the second and fourth innings have been more productive than the first and third. The last four first innings have yielded scores of 157, 243, 209 and 291. The second innings scores have been higher, with South Africa managing 651 against Australia in 2009. The fourth innings has been pretty productive too, though that's partly because of teams achieving smallish fourth-innings targets with a fair number of wickets in hand. In the early 2000s, though, teams managed quite big scores in the fourth innings: Australia chased down a target of 331 in 2002, while West Indies made 354 for 5 in 2004 to save the game. In the most recent Test here, England hung on for a draw after being nine down for 296, after South Africa had set them a target of 466.

Innings-wise runs per wicket in Cape Town since 2000
1st innings 2nd innings 3rd innings 4th innings
32.22 39.30 30.25 42.19

S Rajesh is stats editor of Cricinfo

Comments have now been closed for this article

  • on January 3, 2011, 12:02 GMT

    Sehwag should play carefully today.As the day is not promising for him.If he adopts agression he may have to leave early.The stars indicate that he should remain very cool and defensive in his approach.Sachin tendulkar has a mixed day.Should be careful.Tommorow he can do better.

  • on January 2, 2011, 7:20 GMT

    I totally agree with @IndianaJones79. No one is spoke for aussies for their 98 allout, every one is spoke about 136, why my friends??? why ??? And India win came against all the hardcore test playing nations like: Eng, SL, NZ, Aus, WI, Pak. And beat there home ground also. And SA win came most of the home matches except win in Aus by epic inn posted by G Smith. India performed as good home as well as away.Let hope for the best for todays match. Hope India will win the test series agst SA.

  • Nadeem1976 on January 2, 2011, 5:23 GMT

    This is going to decide which team is really the #1 team in the world. India has to prove every body wrong that their #1 position is a fluke and due to their sub continent record. India has greatest batting legends and they can win or draw this match. SA has best fast bowler and best allrounder in the world so they will atack to beat india and try to get to #1 spot. This is like Test Championship final. What a start to new decade. I hope to see a great great match at the start of this decade. Lets see.

  • on January 2, 2011, 4:11 GMT

    @former_cricketer: Who has forced India to produce batting tracks? It's countries like SA and Aus. When we prepare a turning track ur teams get rolled over in 3 days and pitch is termed as unplayable (SA in Kanpur and Aus in Mumbai are examples). Then follows a huge uproar about how unplayable the pitch was (even though India scores more than 200) and curators are forced to dish out batsman friendly wicktes because in India u cant prepare fast wicktes. Nobody in SA or Aus wants to agree how hopeless they are against spin. But when a test gets over in effectively 3 days with no team reaching 250 and one getting bowled out under 150, it makes for 'exciting' test match. No doubt it was an exciting match but so was SA and Aus. But these teams, the crybabies they are won't accept it. They want fast and bouncy wickets everywhere to perform. India is No.1 because u can't beat them on turning tracks... these teams don't play spin well... and India can compete on fast and bouncy tracks. Period.

  • Mannix16 on January 2, 2011, 4:11 GMT

    @newkid nobody questioned Australia because they virtually won every match in their prime.... and when they didn't, it was because they were giving chance to other players and their star players were rested.... they dominated cricket for many years and by the time the ranking system came by, nobody would dare question their superiority if india continues complete dominance over other countries, then watch in a few years this talk about them being no 1 will go down.... in my opinion, i think the top 4 test teams at the moment (Ind, SA, Eng, SL... not Aus btw) are pretty close, and i do agree that india has slight edge over the others, but after dravid, tendulkar, and laxman retire (which i do think will be soon), india's short dominance in test cricket will be over

  • Newkid on January 2, 2011, 3:06 GMT

    I wrote huge thing showing all stats for India in last year but they didn't post it. I am not going to post it again but your 51% and 43% stats need some context such as time period and number of games played and whom they were played against. The point was there have been more results than draws in India and India have won 11, drawn 6 and lost only 3 out of 20 in last 2 years and hence they are number one.

  • on January 2, 2011, 2:17 GMT

    former_cricketer most of sa win came against zim and Bangladesh. Indias win came against Aus, WI, Pak and SL

  • Newkid on January 2, 2011, 1:26 GMT

    Going back to your 51%, SAF has played 17 games in 2009 and 2010. They have won 6, drawn 5 and lost 6. I am not sure how you make 51% ratio out of that. You do know that ICC rankings gives more weight to preceding two years of any august and less to two years before that, don't you? You also have to consider the ranking of teams against whom you are winning in the equation.

  • cabinet96 on January 1, 2011, 23:02 GMT

    @stevebriggs yeah like the lightning pitch in Nagpur where SA beat Ind by an innings and Steyn took 7 for. That was one of the quickest wickets off all time, and probably quicker than the old Perth and Jamaica wickets.

  • Statsmatter on January 1, 2011, 22:10 GMT

    @newkid I also agree with @former_cricketer. India only produces boring no results pitches and then the Indian rankings are boosted. If you try to remember Australia actually won 16 or 17 Test matches - that's right, WON in a row....like 100%. That is why the comparison was made to the great West Indies team. What has India done to compare with these two great modern cricket reigns??? @IndianaJones79 - no-one questions India's impressive performance of late but no need to suggest unsportsmanship and umpires prevented greater success.

  • on January 3, 2011, 12:02 GMT

    Sehwag should play carefully today.As the day is not promising for him.If he adopts agression he may have to leave early.The stars indicate that he should remain very cool and defensive in his approach.Sachin tendulkar has a mixed day.Should be careful.Tommorow he can do better.

  • on January 2, 2011, 7:20 GMT

    I totally agree with @IndianaJones79. No one is spoke for aussies for their 98 allout, every one is spoke about 136, why my friends??? why ??? And India win came against all the hardcore test playing nations like: Eng, SL, NZ, Aus, WI, Pak. And beat there home ground also. And SA win came most of the home matches except win in Aus by epic inn posted by G Smith. India performed as good home as well as away.Let hope for the best for todays match. Hope India will win the test series agst SA.

  • Nadeem1976 on January 2, 2011, 5:23 GMT

    This is going to decide which team is really the #1 team in the world. India has to prove every body wrong that their #1 position is a fluke and due to their sub continent record. India has greatest batting legends and they can win or draw this match. SA has best fast bowler and best allrounder in the world so they will atack to beat india and try to get to #1 spot. This is like Test Championship final. What a start to new decade. I hope to see a great great match at the start of this decade. Lets see.

  • on January 2, 2011, 4:11 GMT

    @former_cricketer: Who has forced India to produce batting tracks? It's countries like SA and Aus. When we prepare a turning track ur teams get rolled over in 3 days and pitch is termed as unplayable (SA in Kanpur and Aus in Mumbai are examples). Then follows a huge uproar about how unplayable the pitch was (even though India scores more than 200) and curators are forced to dish out batsman friendly wicktes because in India u cant prepare fast wicktes. Nobody in SA or Aus wants to agree how hopeless they are against spin. But when a test gets over in effectively 3 days with no team reaching 250 and one getting bowled out under 150, it makes for 'exciting' test match. No doubt it was an exciting match but so was SA and Aus. But these teams, the crybabies they are won't accept it. They want fast and bouncy wickets everywhere to perform. India is No.1 because u can't beat them on turning tracks... these teams don't play spin well... and India can compete on fast and bouncy tracks. Period.

  • Mannix16 on January 2, 2011, 4:11 GMT

    @newkid nobody questioned Australia because they virtually won every match in their prime.... and when they didn't, it was because they were giving chance to other players and their star players were rested.... they dominated cricket for many years and by the time the ranking system came by, nobody would dare question their superiority if india continues complete dominance over other countries, then watch in a few years this talk about them being no 1 will go down.... in my opinion, i think the top 4 test teams at the moment (Ind, SA, Eng, SL... not Aus btw) are pretty close, and i do agree that india has slight edge over the others, but after dravid, tendulkar, and laxman retire (which i do think will be soon), india's short dominance in test cricket will be over

  • Newkid on January 2, 2011, 3:06 GMT

    I wrote huge thing showing all stats for India in last year but they didn't post it. I am not going to post it again but your 51% and 43% stats need some context such as time period and number of games played and whom they were played against. The point was there have been more results than draws in India and India have won 11, drawn 6 and lost only 3 out of 20 in last 2 years and hence they are number one.

  • on January 2, 2011, 2:17 GMT

    former_cricketer most of sa win came against zim and Bangladesh. Indias win came against Aus, WI, Pak and SL

  • Newkid on January 2, 2011, 1:26 GMT

    Going back to your 51%, SAF has played 17 games in 2009 and 2010. They have won 6, drawn 5 and lost 6. I am not sure how you make 51% ratio out of that. You do know that ICC rankings gives more weight to preceding two years of any august and less to two years before that, don't you? You also have to consider the ranking of teams against whom you are winning in the equation.

  • cabinet96 on January 1, 2011, 23:02 GMT

    @stevebriggs yeah like the lightning pitch in Nagpur where SA beat Ind by an innings and Steyn took 7 for. That was one of the quickest wickets off all time, and probably quicker than the old Perth and Jamaica wickets.

  • Statsmatter on January 1, 2011, 22:10 GMT

    @newkid I also agree with @former_cricketer. India only produces boring no results pitches and then the Indian rankings are boosted. If you try to remember Australia actually won 16 or 17 Test matches - that's right, WON in a row....like 100%. That is why the comparison was made to the great West Indies team. What has India done to compare with these two great modern cricket reigns??? @IndianaJones79 - no-one questions India's impressive performance of late but no need to suggest unsportsmanship and umpires prevented greater success.

  • former_cricketer on January 1, 2011, 20:42 GMT

    @newkid.u said a team who wins more games then india can b number 1.well here is a fun fact for u.india is num 1 after winning 43% of their matches n SA is num 2 even after winning 51% of their matches.so how come a team is behind india on table even though their winning percentage is way ahead of india? the answer is boring draws that india is giving to cricketing world on their dead wickets.that is why ppl complain about indian wickets becoz they dont give a result easily.indians score 650 runs, opposition scores 650 runs n audience dies of boredom.whereas other countries have wickets that give u result.so india with 41% wins is on top bcoz they have probably 40% draws. n SA despite playing better cricket n 51% wins is number 2 bcoz they have only 15% or 20% draws.so u get ur answer i think that why ppl dont agree india is number 1 n why they complain about indian wickets.

  • IndianaJones79 on January 1, 2011, 19:42 GMT

    People can not see indian get number 1 ranking. That's why everybody attacks india when india play bad. These people are purely hypocrites.

    India bundled out 136 - Indians are flat track bully and can not play fast bowling on bouncy track. SA bundled out on 131, Aus bundled out on 98,110. Nobody speaks about their ability to handle pacy tracks. When SA win at home, they should be considered number 1, when india win at home they are flat track bully(Remember this is people call flat track where SA fold up like cards and other teams are experiencing same). India won series in England/NZ/WI/Pakistan. And they performed amazingly in Australia in 2003(1-1 series and last match was in india's hand, Aus could draw because of our friend Bucknor),2007(because of Sydney sega we lost 2-1, and in Sydney we forced aussies to take root of unsportmanship to win), SA in last tour we lost (2-1), now (1-1). Where is bad performance folks. India performed good @home as well as away. india is no 1.

  • ashish514 on January 1, 2011, 18:34 GMT

    being patriotic supporting your team is one thing but i think it would have been better for India if it had been a bowler friendly wicket coz SA bowlers can take wickets on flat tracks due to their pace, but our bowlers need those conditions more than SA. You can argue this by stating our batting strength but they too have Amla who never seems to get out against India and then there's kallis who never looks to get out against any team. Add to that Smith's aggression and De villiers form, getting past SA batsmen without friendly conditions will be difficult. Also the toss will be important, the last piece of stats shows that team batting second has an advantage here.

  • on January 1, 2011, 17:46 GMT

    happy new year india will post 445 runs in first inn and rsa will make 275runs it will be good cricket

  • on January 1, 2011, 16:00 GMT

    SA are a good team but at their ground only thus are the INDIANS. But India is also a good team(currently) in Srilanka, Pakistan, Bangladesh, England, New Zealand, Australia,Zimbabwe and even South Africa. This is being said as "THE TEST FOR THE CROWNE" . But if really this thing was to be tested it would better have been a neutral venue tournament. Some where in CHINA, USA or in Country like CANADA where you can promote cricket too. As the curator is saying this is a batting pitch if it happens then either it will be a draw or a INDIA win SA can not win over INDIAN batsmen. and only Bhajji has the trick to remove wickets from these tracks

  • on January 1, 2011, 15:26 GMT

    india will win cape town test and also the first series win in south africa

  • stevebriggs on January 1, 2011, 15:06 GMT

    SAs are just fast track bully... they cant play cricket on any other pitches..

  • afrikhan on January 1, 2011, 14:51 GMT

    South Africa will win the Cape town test.

  • Newkid on January 1, 2011, 14:44 GMT

    @Mannix16 - Maybe you should check records of these players for last couple of years to see why India is No.1 and not this series alone. Also, cricket is a team sport, so not everybody has to fire in one game, but if couple of them do then any team will be well served. Enough with all the people questioning India's No.1 ranking. The ranking will change when some other team has won more game, as simple as that. Nobody ever questioned, how many games Australia had played in Aus when they were on top or how other teams prepare pitches to take advantage of home ground but why just when it comes to India? How is it that all these good teams are not able to perform on flat tracks that their fans have to call India flat track bullies? What goes wrong with the other teams on those tracks? Must be something that they lack in their batting/bowling that they can't get many wins in easiest of tracks.

  • on January 1, 2011, 14:36 GMT

    wow......dhoni has lost 13 of his last 14 tosses.......must be some kind of a record

  • on January 1, 2011, 14:04 GMT

    It is obvious that India has a record of coming back and they have done it well in Durban beautifully but keep the momentum till the end of next test because SA looks like a wounded lion they will hit back like tornado on Indian batsmen be carefull especially when their pride is at stake but still we hope India can atleast draw in cape town with SACHIN AND DRAVID tocometo terms and of course our hero VVS .Only Sachin and Dravid to take care of the first innings the second will be taken care of byVVS

  • indianpunter on January 1, 2011, 13:59 GMT

    Sack Dravid, Save India !!

  • the_predator on January 1, 2011, 13:57 GMT

    @Mannix16 : in the first test the pitch flattened out when the SA was batting also. That was the precise reason why they scored so many runs. The very next test when the conditions were a bit testing they collasped like anything. So In that sense SA batsmen also has failed.

    SA batsmen are also no so great (apart from KALIS) by any means. If Indians cannot play pace and boune and swing then the proteans are abosolute novish (at times ridiculous) while plying SPIN. If INDIA is not NO 1 then SA is also not NO 1 India at least has won a match in a track which has pace and bouce swing (perhaps the most in SA).

    I would wait for that day when SA wins in INDIA (even in sri lanka) on a turner like KANPUR (against bhajji/amit mishra/pragayan ojha). We all know how pathetic they are on these kind of SPINING tracks against skilled spinners.

    India may even loose the next test. But if that means INDIA is not NO 1, then SA also has to win in SPINNING track to prove their worth as NO 1.

  • sachinsjaihindustan on January 1, 2011, 13:01 GMT

    I agree with you guys. India shouldn't read too much into past records here, because their overall record in South Africa has shown that they have had some serious beatings on previous tours (in particular during the 1990s and 2001/2002). However they have a much better team this time. If they show strong resilience with the bat on what should be a good surface, and maintain the same aggression and intent with the ball (as they did in Kingsmead) they should do well. Common guys!! Chak de India!!!!!

  • sameer997 on January 1, 2011, 12:24 GMT

    well india have a chance good luck

  • moBlue on January 1, 2011, 12:14 GMT

    this analysis did not shed light on the following relevant facts. in 1997 and 2006, india batted second and first, respectively, and scored over 300 both times in the first inning. of the two times, in 2006, india actually outscored SA in the first inning! but india lost both tests. why? because of abysmal second inning batting by india. in fact, in the 2006 test, the latest test played by india at this venue, if they had scored another 90 runs [which that team, based on its record on the tour until that point, could have easily done, if they had been more disciplined], they could have won the match and hence the series! (the final fourth inning winning score of SA was 211 for 5.) the analysis also did not note that it was zaheer khan who took 4 out of the 5 SA wickets that fell in that fourth inning. so, if india bat first, and bat to par in both innings, they *can* win on this pitch, much more easily than they did on the tough durban pitch. the indian bowlers will do just fine here!

  • KunzMan on January 1, 2011, 11:22 GMT

    Past records do not matter for India as we have the best team this time around that has toured SA. But they do matter for SA as SA has a bad record in Durban recently and they lived up to it in last test. Capetown is considered to be a heaven for SA. Hope they are not reading this.

  • akhilvaryani on January 1, 2011, 11:03 GMT

    Small error: Instead of 'Pul' Harris it should be 'Paul' Harris, in the 7th para, nevertheless, Go India Go!!! Win the series India!!! Jai Hind!!!

  • Mannix16 on January 1, 2011, 10:52 GMT

    Interestingly enough, from this series alone I still fail to see how India is no 1 rank.... All their batsman have failed save for Laxman in his amazing innings and tendulkar when the pitch flattened out in the 1st... Zaheer Khan's presence in the team has definetely upgraded the bowling attack, but their batting is very disappointing....especially since gambhir, sehwag, tendulkar, and dravid are all supposed to be in good form....

  • on January 1, 2011, 9:49 GMT

    No PAST records are accounting for the present team of INDIA.....SACHIN, SEHWAG, GAMBHIR, DRAVID, DHONI, and very very special LAXMAN...... Its challenge for South African bowlers to get all these wickets of INDIA in flat pitch........... ALL THE BEST for team INDIA and also SA........SMITH had challenged INDIA to make AMLA out with out scoring much runs but INDIAn bowlers slapped SMITH with our bowling....... Now " WE (INDIANS) are challenging SOUTH AFRICA whether they can stop our LAXMAN.......? "

    ANS : its very simple that, there is no way to stop LAXMAN...... common LAXMAN.......

  • on January 1, 2011, 9:27 GMT

    Past Record doesnt have an Impact on Current series,India always came as acropper against Proteas in Durban but they finally settle some score theer last week and something different as Capetown

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  • on January 1, 2011, 9:27 GMT

    Past Record doesnt have an Impact on Current series,India always came as acropper against Proteas in Durban but they finally settle some score theer last week and something different as Capetown

  • on January 1, 2011, 9:49 GMT

    No PAST records are accounting for the present team of INDIA.....SACHIN, SEHWAG, GAMBHIR, DRAVID, DHONI, and very very special LAXMAN...... Its challenge for South African bowlers to get all these wickets of INDIA in flat pitch........... ALL THE BEST for team INDIA and also SA........SMITH had challenged INDIA to make AMLA out with out scoring much runs but INDIAn bowlers slapped SMITH with our bowling....... Now " WE (INDIANS) are challenging SOUTH AFRICA whether they can stop our LAXMAN.......? "

    ANS : its very simple that, there is no way to stop LAXMAN...... common LAXMAN.......

  • Mannix16 on January 1, 2011, 10:52 GMT

    Interestingly enough, from this series alone I still fail to see how India is no 1 rank.... All their batsman have failed save for Laxman in his amazing innings and tendulkar when the pitch flattened out in the 1st... Zaheer Khan's presence in the team has definetely upgraded the bowling attack, but their batting is very disappointing....especially since gambhir, sehwag, tendulkar, and dravid are all supposed to be in good form....

  • akhilvaryani on January 1, 2011, 11:03 GMT

    Small error: Instead of 'Pul' Harris it should be 'Paul' Harris, in the 7th para, nevertheless, Go India Go!!! Win the series India!!! Jai Hind!!!

  • KunzMan on January 1, 2011, 11:22 GMT

    Past records do not matter for India as we have the best team this time around that has toured SA. But they do matter for SA as SA has a bad record in Durban recently and they lived up to it in last test. Capetown is considered to be a heaven for SA. Hope they are not reading this.

  • moBlue on January 1, 2011, 12:14 GMT

    this analysis did not shed light on the following relevant facts. in 1997 and 2006, india batted second and first, respectively, and scored over 300 both times in the first inning. of the two times, in 2006, india actually outscored SA in the first inning! but india lost both tests. why? because of abysmal second inning batting by india. in fact, in the 2006 test, the latest test played by india at this venue, if they had scored another 90 runs [which that team, based on its record on the tour until that point, could have easily done, if they had been more disciplined], they could have won the match and hence the series! (the final fourth inning winning score of SA was 211 for 5.) the analysis also did not note that it was zaheer khan who took 4 out of the 5 SA wickets that fell in that fourth inning. so, if india bat first, and bat to par in both innings, they *can* win on this pitch, much more easily than they did on the tough durban pitch. the indian bowlers will do just fine here!

  • sameer997 on January 1, 2011, 12:24 GMT

    well india have a chance good luck

  • sachinsjaihindustan on January 1, 2011, 13:01 GMT

    I agree with you guys. India shouldn't read too much into past records here, because their overall record in South Africa has shown that they have had some serious beatings on previous tours (in particular during the 1990s and 2001/2002). However they have a much better team this time. If they show strong resilience with the bat on what should be a good surface, and maintain the same aggression and intent with the ball (as they did in Kingsmead) they should do well. Common guys!! Chak de India!!!!!

  • the_predator on January 1, 2011, 13:57 GMT

    @Mannix16 : in the first test the pitch flattened out when the SA was batting also. That was the precise reason why they scored so many runs. The very next test when the conditions were a bit testing they collasped like anything. So In that sense SA batsmen also has failed.

    SA batsmen are also no so great (apart from KALIS) by any means. If Indians cannot play pace and boune and swing then the proteans are abosolute novish (at times ridiculous) while plying SPIN. If INDIA is not NO 1 then SA is also not NO 1 India at least has won a match in a track which has pace and bouce swing (perhaps the most in SA).

    I would wait for that day when SA wins in INDIA (even in sri lanka) on a turner like KANPUR (against bhajji/amit mishra/pragayan ojha). We all know how pathetic they are on these kind of SPINING tracks against skilled spinners.

    India may even loose the next test. But if that means INDIA is not NO 1, then SA also has to win in SPINNING track to prove their worth as NO 1.

  • indianpunter on January 1, 2011, 13:59 GMT

    Sack Dravid, Save India !!