South Africa v India, 3rd Test, Cape Town

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

S Rajesh

January 1, 2011

Comments: 31 | Text size: A | A

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

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Posted by   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.

Posted by   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.

Posted by 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.

Posted by   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.

Posted by 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

Posted by 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.

Posted by   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

Posted by 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.

Posted by 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.

Posted by 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.

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S Rajesh Stats editor Every week the Numbers Game takes a look at the story behind the stats, with an original slant on facts and figures. The column is edited by S Rajesh, ESPNcricinfo's stats editor in Bangalore. He did an MBA in marketing, and then worked for a year in advertising, before deciding to chuck it in favour of a job which would combine the pleasures of watching cricket and writing about it. The intense office cricket matches were an added bonus.
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