SA A v India A, 2nd unofficial Test, Pretoria, 3rd day

South Africa set India a daunting target of 307

ESPNcricinfo staff

August 26, 2013

Comments: 52 | Text size: A | A

India A 201 & 3 for 1 need another 304 runs to beat South Africa A 341 & 166 for 5 dec (Elgar 62, Nadeem 3-56)
Scorecard and ball-by-ball details

Beuran Hendricks is congratulated after taking five wickets, South Africa A v Australia A, 2nd unofficial Test, Day 1, Rustenberg, July 31, 2013
Beuran Hendricks bagged his eighth five-wicket haul in first-class matches © Getty Images
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South Africa A provided the prospect of an exciting finish to the second unofficial Test by setting India A a steep target of 307 on the third day in Pretoria. The visitors scored three after losing M Vijay's wicket 13 balls before stumps. South Africa, however, have also suffered a blow as fast bowler Wayne Parnell complained of shortness of breath on Sunday and is still in the hospital under observation and for tests. He bowled only two overs in India's first innings.

India ended up batting twice on the third day after they resumed at 145 for 6 in reply to South Africa's 341. Ambati Rayudu added only 15 to his overnight score of 14 before he became offspinner Simon Harmer's third wicket. The tail could not survive for too long either, the remaining three wickets fell within nine runs when Ishwar Pandey and Siddarth Kaul were out for ducks. Parvez Rasool's unbeaten 32, however, ensured India crossed the 200-run mark. After disappointing figures of 1 for 155 in the previous match, Harmer finished with 4 for 74 and left-arm pacer Beuran Hendricks bagged his eighth five-wicket haul in first-class cricket to give South Africa an important 140-run lead.

The hosts added to India's miseries when openers Reeza Hendricks and Dean Elgar put on 53, even though they scored at less than two runs per over, crossing the 50-run mark in the 26th over. Reeza and Rilee Rossouw fell to left-arm spinner Shahbaz Nadeem in successive overs. Nadeem had Reeza caught at slip by Dinesh Karthik for 20 and Rossouw was bowled for a four-ball duck. Elgar, along with Temba Bavuma, took South Africa past 100 before Rasool bowled Elgar for 62. Justing Ontong, captain of the South Africa side, elevated their run rate with a quick 35 off 32, which included four fours and a six. South Africa declared shortly after losing Bavuma and Ontong within two overs with their lead more than 300.

India's hopes of ending the day unscathed were dashed by Beuran who got rid of Vijay in his first over, even before India had scored their first run. Nadeem came in as nightwatchman at No. 3 and survived seven deliveries. India now need another 304 runs to win the series 2-0, and South Africa nine wickets to draw level.

Beuran was confident of maintaining the pressure on India on a deteriorating fourth-day pitch. "We are slightly ahead of them so we are quite confident of finishing the job tomorrow," he said. "We have to take the momentum we created today and push it on tomorrow. Simon [Harmer] is going to come into the game perfectly and, with a deteriorating day four pitch, it is going to be an interesting day."

Beuran had a tough time of it in the unofficial Tests against Australia A earlier this month, where, save for one burst where he ran through the middle order to claim a five-for, he had figures of 1 for 213 in three innings. The difference, he said, was in his approach: "The difference is that against Australia A, I played more against the names in that team, that was my downfall. Here, I played against the batsmen, not the names."

© ESPN Sports Media Ltd.

Posted by rajcl on (August 27, 2013, 15:05 GMT)

guys relax dont compare A matches to international matches,,because before austalia tour same discussion done by peoples & vijay proved lets see for few more matches then we can judge where he is capble or not,,as of now he is good test opener lets see how he play next 1 or 2 serious,,,tecnic & timing is not big issue for todays cricket,,no one know dravid becomes wall, & dhoni in odis he came with BOOM BOOM batsman ,but now com & composed & gretest finishers of all time,,what my opinion is any one dont no what he scores wait for few matches

Posted by ramz30380 on (August 27, 2013, 14:47 GMT)

@venkatindian - Ashwin played just 3 of the 4 tests in Aus.

This series was a prep for the one against the Saffas later this yr, so lets not take too much on this loss nor laud too much on the win in the prev match. Raina, R.Sharma, Rahane & I.Pandey have presented a strong case here.

I am sure the selectors will give DK the nod over Saha even though he performed in this match. We need to wait and watch wht the others do in the next 3 months to stake a claim in the test squad. A drop of form in the upcoming one-dayers cannot help. Let's hope that the best Ind team reaches the shores of SA later this year.

Posted by ramz30380 on (August 27, 2013, 14:32 GMT)

@gsingh - Ashwin has played only 3 tests outside India and I cant believe that u r rating him a mediocre bowler based on his performance in Aus when the so called spearheads of the Indian pace attack (who are by the way still in the team) faltered!

Pujara didnt score well in his performances in SA last time (u cant say he is unknown outside of Ind) - would u rate him an ordinary player bcoz of one series?! I wont - i think he is class. Ashwin didnt do well against the English but he made the changes that was reqd and came back strong against the Aussies - do remind u he was the man of the series! That is the mark of a class player.

Ashwin will not lose his place in the XI - he is our front line spinner and will remain to be till someone bowls extra-ordinary on his own! By this I mean - SRJ bowls well only when MSD is around bcoz he is unsure abt field placements.

I am completely annoyed by regional bias and references here! Appreciate where they deserve and criticize where needed.

Posted by   on (August 27, 2013, 14:30 GMT)

BE Hendricks(who is a Left-arm fast swing and seem bowler) and Simon Harmer(who is a Right arm off-break bowler) showed the south Africa International player likes the Kyle-Abbott who took just two wickets where as BE Hendricks took 11 wicket's and Simon Harmer who as a Off-break bowler a dire necessity at the moment for south Africa in the Test match's a Quality Off-spinner so, these two bowler BE Hendricks and Simon Harmer could be used in the U.A.E match's.BE Hendricks especially took 11 wicket's in a Test match and didn't let India A batsmen settle on the wicket's and in the End with the bowling of these two fast bowler who are the alone wicket's taker's for South Africa A against India A in the second UN-official Test match.Both these two players should be very fastly inducted into south african international side.So, my suggestion for captain Smith,O.D.I captain AB devellier's,Faf du-plasis and coach Russell Domingo is to get these two player's very quickly into South Africa.

Posted by JD04 on (August 27, 2013, 14:29 GMT)

Quite a dampener I would say, after two/three weeks of good cricket by the Indian contingent. Well, to see the positive side of this defeat, the players will be guarded against complacency for the upcoming tour to South Africa. One thing is for sure, India cannot complain unfamiliarity anymore with South African conditions, though I am sure the pitches will be starkly different from what we have seen now. JM.

Posted by Naresh28 on (August 27, 2013, 14:18 GMT)

Fans will be a bit disappointed with this loss, but its okay and not the end of the world. The team chosen for this game was a bit unbalanced when compared to the first. A few positives emerged in that we now know that Karthik, Vijay, Rayudu, Rasool, Nadeem are good but not exceptional. They were chosen by the selectors to see where they fit. Rahane and Saha - played well and the whole team failed in the Ist innings. I still see Rahane/Saha warming the benches. Lets see how the others in the A -team playing in India tomorrow perform. I hope others like Gambhir and Yuvraj put some good performances so that they can be counted. The other two recent players are ZOL and Lokesh Rahul - but these guys need to play more to be considered.

Posted by   on (August 27, 2013, 14:18 GMT)

@vyas sanzgiri: Look at the first innings, champ. Two five wicket hauls in the match is worth a mention, don't you think?

Posted by venkat_indian on (August 27, 2013, 14:13 GMT)

@gsingh7 Ashwin played 4 test in australia in which he bagged 10 wickets most among the spinners in both the teams in that particular series. Am not saying it is the best performance, but in seaming conditions it is the job of the seam bowlers to take responsibility not the spinners. N also it was his first tour let give him some more chance in overseas and decide abt him. One bad series in india u r saying he was outbowled. Pls give them some time. After some failure if u want to drop a person then rohit wouldn't have been there now. And also pujara played 2 test matches n sa where he failed, but one bad series can't decide the batsman technique.

Posted by   on (August 27, 2013, 14:11 GMT)

India_A'a 2nd innings; If you take out just ONE partnership of 160 (Rahane & Saha), the total innings was worth 25 runs. JUST 25 RUNS: contribution of everyone else put together! Wow!

The only gains are Saha & Rahane. (Pujara's perennial bad luck continues)

Total write-off is Binny.

Would like to see Vijay's overseas performance. Anyone has? Pl don't flaunt his score within India. Our next overseas assignment is South Africa.

I won't be surprised to see the S A pacer Hendricks in the S A team to face India. In addition to his real worth, it also gives a psychological edge to South Africa.

Posted by QingdaoXI on (August 27, 2013, 14:07 GMT)

So the squad for South Africa down this year will be as follows: Dhoni, Vijay, Dhawan, Rohit, Pujara, Tendulkar, Kohli, Rahane, Saha, Jadeja, Ashwin, Zaheer, Ishant, Umesh, Bhuvaneshwar, Ishwar, Shami, Raina.

Posted by   on (August 27, 2013, 14:06 GMT)

Karthik, Binny, Rayadu and Vijay failed. Kaul has ways to go before he can be considered again. Hopefully this is the last we see of Binny....

Posted by   on (August 27, 2013, 14:00 GMT)

I want to see Harmer do better in first class matches. 7 wickets in a match against India is a good performance indeed, although he was taken for some runs in the second innings. If he continues with his fine form, he might just be selected for the national side.

Posted by   on (August 27, 2013, 13:57 GMT)

Why is there "again" in the title. I do not see any good performances by Beuran Hendricks in the last 5 matches!

Posted by Vleis on (August 27, 2013, 13:48 GMT)

@ Ranvinder Sunda: In answer to your question below, SA A won the game. The positives for SA A are: 1) That was a very good performance by the bowlers to bowl India A out twice (both times in just over two sessions) while missing one of their main strike bowlers through injury - Parnell bowled only 3 overs in 1st innings and none in 2nd innings. 2) The off-spinner (Harmer) took seven wickets in the match, which is very positive against Indian his batting was very good too. 3) The tail wagged brilliantly yet again. The major negative is the top order has been very poor the whole series., so lot's of work to be done there.

Posted by realfan on (August 27, 2013, 13:39 GMT)

hmmm. RAHANE has prooved it..... selectors have serious trouble now with vijay being failed, tendu retiring after this series, rohit being succeded as opener.....they have to be very brave now......i am vouching for rahane soon......

Posted by   on (August 27, 2013, 13:21 GMT)

Binny proved to be ineffective at this level; whatever may be his domestic credentials. ( It almost looked like, India-A went with just 10 players; not a XI)

Posted by gsingh7 on (August 27, 2013, 13:15 GMT)

@ramesh-- pujara is unknown outside of india,but ashwin was outbowled by english spinners in his own home grounds. ashwin did played few tests overseas and was clobbered like a club level player. just want him to perform this series or go back to ranji trophy to learn bowling skills. i wud happily take 11 players from chennai or for that matter from arunachal pradesh if they win matches and not get whitewashed like last two times india went overseas.i never said drop vijay but he himself have brought himself to verge of dropping after his recent failings.

Posted by   on (August 27, 2013, 12:55 GMT)

My playing XI for Boxing day is Rohit, Shikhar, Pujara, Sachin, Virat, Dhoni, Sir, Bhuvi, Zakh, Ishant, Yadav ! Rahane, Raina (thought not big fan of him, but CSK factor and CLT20 will take him on the tour), Ashwin, Varun Aron and Saha could be reserved for Opening, Middle, Spin, Pace and WK spots

Posted by Haleos on (August 27, 2013, 12:45 GMT)

Fail to understand what Vijayi is doing here. I think they want him with the main team later in the year. That would be a very bad choice.

Posted by   on (August 27, 2013, 12:33 GMT)

@ Srini_Chennai

Jadeja hasn't proved in tests in thosw conditions so your argument is flawed.And anyways everyone know where your support from Vijay and Ashwin is coming from. We too want them to succeed but for greater good of team India

Posted by   on (August 27, 2013, 12:24 GMT)

@Blade-Runner...Are you still watching!..Whats the score now??

Posted by ramesh_sound on (August 27, 2013, 12:18 GMT)

The thread continues to show the bias. Ashwin is still in the running to become the second fastest in test history ever to reach 100 wickets; Comparable to Philander. But here gsingh7 is warning he should be dropped; Pujara averages 65. Ashwin has 90 wickets; Both predominantly under Indian conditions. But one is a champion and other a pretender! I also like watching Rohit Sharma. He has been doing well this year and he is just unfortunate not to have been selected in 2008 itself; But this overwhelming rush to drop Vijay on the basis of a first class match and go with Rohit is funny. Hope Capricorn60 watched how he handled Kulasekara in England? He could have got out once every over. THis match has made sure, Saha is the second keeper.

Posted by TheUltimateTruth on (August 27, 2013, 11:40 GMT)

I am extremely disappointed for Vijay and Kartik and delighted for Rahane. But, I still can't forget the horror shots played by Rahane in both his innings on debut. Not sure I can trust him in SA against Steyn, Morkel, and Philander. The selectors would have to try one of Rohit or Rahane in tests to open along with Dhawan. I am hoping Gambhir makes a comeback with good performances in the county games.

Posted by gsingh7 on (August 27, 2013, 10:53 GMT)

@srini--- ashwin have shown in past that he is mediocre away from home, pujara is best averaging batsman in the world and indians have high hopes from him. cannot compare jadeja succes and wish vijay will do just the same. rohit have got 0 chances in test team whereas vijay failed on numerous times while opening the innings. as indian i hope we get stable opening batsmen as middle order is looking strong and also hoping ashwin lift his game away from home or he will lose place to younger spinners if india losses 3-0 or similar scoreline.

Posted by Clan_McLachlan on (August 27, 2013, 10:30 GMT)

Too bad about the slow batting setting up a total, but otherwise SA A lads have done really well. Hope Parnell is ok, and hope they can push for the result today.

Posted by Srini_Chennai on (August 27, 2013, 10:22 GMT)

@Capricorn60: How you're so sure that Rohit can handle the raw pace of Steyn, Morkel etc in seaming conditions when he hasn't played even a single test? Playing limited overs is totally different to tests. Many fans like you think Pujara, Dhawan, Rohit will succeed in SA, you might be right, I hope you're right but Dhawan and Rohit played 0 test matches in SA while Pujara played 2 and didn't score much. On the other hand, Vijay and to some extent Ashwin are labeled poor in overseas conditions. Remember 3 or 4 years back when Jadeja was labeled poor and 'unfit' for international cricket. Look at his performance now. Amazing! I hope the squad which routed Aussies plays in SA and do well.

Posted by ballonbat on (August 27, 2013, 9:44 GMT)

@ Blade-Runner. Unknown to whom? Ontong, Parnell, Elgar, Tsolekile and Abbott have all already played for the Proteas. Rilee Rossouw has been making a truckload of runs on the domestic scene the past few seasons (over 4500 at 44+) and will be a Protea soon, I reckon. He was in the RCB squad too. And the other five are all well established franchise players in South Africa. Beuran Hendricks is a particularly exciting find who is getting his 1st class wickets at 21 and a s/r under 40. Harmer is a solid bat so could be a good option as an all rounder spinner for SA. I don't see the others making the step up but Birch might - he's already 28 though. See

You must take off your blinkers. I could say the same about some of the younger Indian players whom I hadn't heard of. But I reckon they are pretty well known back home.

Posted by Capricorn60 on (August 27, 2013, 9:41 GMT)

@ Ramesh Soundararajan - my views on the competence of Vijay as an overseas opener or any South Indian player for that matter are certainly not parochialistic or regionally-biased as I am of South Indian background myself! My views are totally objective in that I frankly do not think Vijay will be comfortable against the raw pace of Steyn, Morkel etc in SA as Rohit will be from what I see. MSD does believe in team flexibility & so perhaps one option would be perhaps for Rohit opening with Dhawan whilst Vijay could be protected a bit by slotting in at No. 6. Maybe also Rohit opening with Dhawan in Tests & in T20I's as they do in ODI's will only help improve their understanding of each other - allowing their partnership to then flourish further in all formats of the game.

Posted by gsingh7 on (August 27, 2013, 9:37 GMT)

not ideal sa wickets but indian a team won 1 and are saving second. if they do save the test it will prove without doubt that they are best a team in the world . to graft a draw from tough start is an art and lets see if indian youngster can save a lost cause. bat like dravid and get a place in india senior team.

Posted by gsingh7 on (August 27, 2013, 9:28 GMT)

not ideal sa wickets but indian a team won 1 and are saving second. if they do save the test it will prove without doubt that they are best a team in the world . to graft a draw from tough start is an art and lets see if indian youngster can save a lost cause. bat like dravid and get a place in india senior team.

Posted by Blade-Runner on (August 27, 2013, 8:54 GMT)

What's happening to the best A-team in the world? They r now 33/5 n facing a massive defeat against a SA team comprised with some unknown players.

Posted by manav08 on (August 27, 2013, 8:13 GMT)

I think Nadeem and Pandey are the two bowlers whose performance stands out amongst others. moreover they are consistantly performing since ranji. nadeem as a left arm spinner is continuously performing and came out with the highest wicket taker among india A.these two young lad need to be focussed and be well rewarded for their performance.

Posted by   on (August 27, 2013, 7:51 GMT)

Between Gambhir and Sehwag, as openers there was one test century for 19 test matches. But people were patient. Vijay doubled that tally in 4 test matches. We are already talking about dropping him? Agreed he still has to convince us of his ability outside of India. But one needs to be given chance to do it. The parochialism of a section of fans against players like Vijay, Ashwin etc. as expressed in these message boards is stunning

Posted by nayonika on (August 27, 2013, 6:37 GMT)

The Indians have to keep the habit of winning and doing it on a wearing track will greatly enhance the reputation of some of the 'seniors' in this side like Pujara,Karthik and Saha. Go for it boys.

Posted by Sir_Ivor on (August 27, 2013, 6:29 GMT)

I wish people would realize that losing a match after making a fist of it does not matter. It is not as if the heavens are coming down if they lose.The important thing is to get some inputs on the merits of the chosen few to enable the selectors have an idea before they sit to select the senior team later this year to visit South Africa.And I am not too sure if the players who have not performed well on this tour need to be taken out of the consideration zone.For instance,Karthik can be a very useful second opener apart from being the reserve wicket keeper.He has done well in South Africa and England before in Tests as an opener.Nadeem and Rasool have not been as successful as expected.I feel this tour will have made them realize the length they need to bowl on these wickets apart from the way these batsmen address any particular type of ball.That is very important.Ashwin,Jadeja and Mishra have already played in South Africa in the IPL2. They should play naturally today win or lose.

Posted by   on (August 27, 2013, 5:48 GMT)

India A definetly have an opportunity to get this task easily as wayne parnell is out of the team the next pacers have a poor length and batsmens like raina and jadeja take over all the place then its a good result to be proven ...

Posted by Marktc on (August 27, 2013, 5:13 GMT)

So far SA A has had a very good game and hopefully can take 9 wkts today. They deserve credit for coming back strong. However, what this tour has highlighted is how th A teams thrive on pitches that suite them and battle ones that do not.

Posted by   on (August 27, 2013, 5:12 GMT)

An uphill task indeed for india A. they would do fine even if they can save this match leave aside winning, bcos honestly spking i dont see any one scoring runs more than 3 per over. So as the tour comes 2 the end, pervez rasool, pandey,shami in the bowling dept have done no harm to thier reputation. In batting rohit, dhawan, pujara excelled as was expected & r strong contenders to come back with the senior team later this yr. I think vijay, rahane, karthik missed the oppurtunity. Raina despite good century may still not make the cut as far as the tset team is concerned. Overall i think the A tour covered most of the bases the selectors were hoping.

Posted by Cpt.Meanster on (August 27, 2013, 4:41 GMT)

I think India will bat well enough to come close to that target. A draw looks likely though. @Capricorn60: I agree with you, Murali Vijay has been given many opportunities. He doesn't look like an overseas opener to me. It's time to move on and bring Rohit Sharma into the equation. I would like to see whether Rohit will be partnering Dhawan in the upcoming test series against SA later this year. This is why I was so upset when I realized Rohit wasn't given the chance to prove his ability in this game.

Posted by SandipManjrekar on (August 27, 2013, 3:57 GMT)

One inning of this match in the entire tour won't extrapolate the future about the Indian's next tour of SA. It is certainly not. An Adherent SA fans feel unnecessary hype of this A-Team series. The last 4 tours explore Indian Cricket going in upward direction. The downtrend of cricket SA since CT 2013 is the most worrying points for their fans. Yet they rely on Steyn/Morkel the most for the upcoming IND's tour. So what next after Kallis, Steyn & Morkel? This future tour will decide the fate of their seniors too. Those who have good bench strength would score points on other. BCCI is in the right direction and nobody wants to tell them what to do. If only fast bowling is feature of international cricket, then debacle in SL wouldn't be happened which probably greatest insult to the stake holder of Test Cricket no.1.

Posted by   on (August 27, 2013, 3:50 GMT)

Murali Vijay had already cemented his place by playing good matches and scoring lot of runs in the last series against the Aussies.He faced lot of balls og Pattinson,Siddle who were looking good at that type of dec. But, I think Vijay his lacking his form now as he is struggling to score runs in the"A"tour which is very important for every youngster no matter he has played for India or not but "A" tour matters a lot especially for those who is willing to wear a test cap.As far as Batting Order is concerned it will be too early to remove Vijay and Put Rohit or a rahane as an opener.But,If Vijay fails to make a mark in the practice matches or in a 1st match he should be immediately drop from the team and someone like a rahane who is waiting for his chance should be promoted to bat up the order.I feel Ajinkya Rahane should bat at top-order he is not getting the right exposure which he deserves in Test Cricket.Rohit Sharma is scoring well and facing lot of balls too...Good Competition!!...

Posted by sps21 on (August 27, 2013, 3:38 GMT)

I feel time is running out for DK; he hasn't made it count till now. He has to fire this time if he wants any any more chances. With Yuvraj fit and raring to go, his position in the ODI team is most vulnerable. I wish him luck! Same goes for rahane. Problem with these guys r they r not performing in a way which captures mind share of the selectors/team mgmt and show their mettle. Hence they dont get extended tenure in the team.

This is what Rohit has done in ODI before he became opener. He would have one series in 3 or4 where he would be standout performer and thus would ensure that he gets more chances. I think Dk/Rahane/Vijay should take a leaf out of Rohit's book.

Posted by prasanna_79 on (August 27, 2013, 3:28 GMT)

Though vijay has failed in these 2 first class matches I think he should be a sure start @ the top order when the SA tests start because he has done remarkably well in d tests against the aussies.. He should be backed through out the series & be given enough confidence because too much shuffling n changing only brings instability which is what's exactly happening in Aussies team.. even if he finishes the series with an avg of 30 to 35 he should be persisted with for other away tours as gaining experience particularly @ the top order and having a gud stable opening pair is the basis of building a strong batting unit..

Posted by SandipManjrekar on (August 27, 2013, 3:11 GMT)

One inning of this match in the entire tour won't extrapolate the future about the Indian's next tour of SA. It is certainly not. An Adherent SA fans feel unnecessary hype of this A-Team series. The last 4 tours explore Indian Cricket going in upward direction. The downtrend of cricket SA since CT 2013 is the most worrying points for their fans. Yet they rely on Steyn/Morkel the most for the upcoming IND's tour. So what next after Kallis, Steyn & Morkel? This future tour will decide the fate of their seniors too. Those who have good bench strength would score points on other. BCCI is in the right direction and nobody wants to tell them what to do. If only fast bowling is feature of international cricket, then debacle in SL wouldn't be happened which probably greatest insult to the stake holder of Test Cricket no.1.

Posted by on (August 27, 2013, 3:02 GMT)

I feel if India bat out the 90 overs, it should get to the target of 304 for the day. However, much would depend on how they play. General tactic is to play safe first, go for win later. However, in this case they have to decide in advance if they want to go for the victory or not. Since this is a tour game and there are no points for saving the test, they must go for the win. Pujara, Raydu, Karthik, Binny and Rahane are good at scroring runs at brisk pace. Pujara should play the role of sheet anchor and others around him should look for runs. Key would be not to play too many dot balls. At least two singles per over should be the norm. This is an inexperienced SA attack and it will lack one key bowler. So there will be plenty of opportunities to score boundaries. However, if they play defensive then the SA bowlers will get a sniff at victory and will be all over the Indians.

Posted by   on (August 27, 2013, 1:43 GMT)

For tests, DK and Rohit remain viable options for no 6 (ideally 5 & 6 if SRT retires and Kohli moves to 4), but one of them can also be a backup opener to Vijay if he continues to fail on pacy wickets.

Posted by Naresh28 on (August 26, 2013, 23:16 GMT)

By losing Vijay early the team is now on the back foot. A complete change from the first game which India won comprehensively. Never the less this is an opportunity for some of the batsman to put up a score. Recently Indian youngsters - ZOL and Lokesh Rahul have staked claims to get into the senior side and these two could leap frog the others. Pandey and some of the batsman sitting out are the gains.

Posted by   on (August 26, 2013, 23:04 GMT)

Totally agree with a fan that Vijay has squandered a golden opportunity to score some nice runs and gain lot of confidence. Runs under the bat are runs, irrespective of opposition. The confidence and run total is a good feeling. DK also has been disappointing. Team India is yet to loose a meaningful match this year -what ever level and whatever be the format. Hopefully, there is a pleasant surprise tomorrow. That would be the icing on the cake for one of the longest ever seasons. Good luck guys.

Posted by Nampally on (August 26, 2013, 18:58 GMT)

India has an uphill task of scoring the targeted 307 to win. But they have strong batting. Only thing India mist watch out is not to let the bowlers get on top by playing too defensively as Rayudu & Saha did on Day 2. Rayudu is an attacking batsman. Why on earth he went into such a defensive shell is a mystery. India must keep the score board moving via singles if it is difficult to get 4's. They have lot of Class batting left in Pujara, Rahane, Rayudu, Karthik & Saha. Even Rasool & Nadeem can contribute. Binny has let this team down badly with his non performance with scores of 0, 4, 0 in 3 at bats. He has to justify his captain's trust in him with a big score. All batsmen need to play responsibly, confidently - No defensive shell & let bowlers dictate. Rotate strike & play your normal game in a disciplined manner. Rahane needs to show he belongs in Tests by scoring big. India has beaten SA thrice. This alone should be a huge confidence booster to play hard to take the series Win!

Posted by Capricorn60 on (August 26, 2013, 18:31 GMT)

Even before this current match, I felt Vijay will be shown wanting again decent pace in overseas conditions & his performances in this & other matches in SA has vindicated this. Unless Gautam shows some form on the county circuit or perhaps Rahane does well tomorrow in saving or even winning the match for India, the only viable option in partnering Dhawan in the Test series against SA later this year will have to be Rohit. I would have preferred him making his Test debut at No 6 but it appears he & Dhawan may have to also take their good opening ODI partnership into the Test arena too.

Posted by SandipManjrekar on (August 26, 2013, 18:00 GMT)

One inning of this match in the entire tour don't extrapolate the future about the Indian's next tour of SA. Certainly not. An Adherent SA fans felt unnecessary hype of this A-Team series. But this tour as well as last 4 series describes the direction of Indian Cricket. The downtrend of cricket SA since CT 2013 is the most worrying points for their fans. Yet they rely on Steyn and M Morkel the most. What next????? This future tour will decide the fate of their seniors too. Those who have good bench strength would score on other. BCCI is in the right direction and nobody wants to tell them what to do. If only fast bowling is feature of international cricket, then debacle in SL wouldn't be happened which probably greatest insult to the stake holder of Test Cricket no.1.

Posted by   on (August 26, 2013, 17:49 GMT)

What is Vijay doing ? Very sadly he has missed out compleately a golden opportunity to cement his place in Indian team as now onwards India dont have any games for him to show his game. Before main SA tour in Nov, India is playing only against Aussies & it is ODI series. So this SA A series was the golden opportunity fir Vijay. He should have grabbed it. But unfortunatel even in last inning he got duck. In ODIs Vijay there is no place Vijay as Dhavan & Rohit are settled now as since CT the pair is consistant enough in all last 3 series. So now Vijay has to rely only on domestic matches like Ranji or Dulip Trophy matches. Ajinkya Rahane too missing the opportunities. Now tom he is having one golden opportunity to proove himself on big stage. If he succeed tom to perform a match winning inning or even a match saving inning, it will realy help him to be in picture. Lets watch him tom. I think Rohit & to some extent Raina only made a good use of SA A tour. Rohit is inching towards Tests.

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