Virat Kohli returns to lead India in the series-deciding Test against South Africa

India’s Test skipper Virat Kohli was unable to participate in the second match in the ongoing Test series against South Africa due to an injury. KL Rahul-led team India lost that match by 7 wickets and South Africa leveled the series. As a result, the third Test match in Cape Town is now a do-or-die contest for both teams. Virat Kohli has returned to lead India in this crucial match, but they only managed to score 223 in their first innings. The first-day match report of the third Test between South Africa and India is discussed in this article.

SA vs IND 3rd Test 2022: First Day Match Report

India decided to bat first in the hopes of amassing a strong first-inning total. The Indian batters did not impress with the bat, as they were all out for only 223 runs after the tea interval. Captain Virat Kohli fought hard in the middle and batted well. However, the elegant right-hand batter squandered another chance to make his 71st international century.

India’s First Innings

India’s innings got off to a shaky start, with KL Rahul (12) and Mayank Agarwal (15) falling within just 13 overs. India had a score of 75/2 at lunchtime.

Cheteshwar Pujara (43) and skipper Virat Kohli attempted to rebuild the innings with a 62-run third-wicket partnership. However, Pujara lost his wicket to Marco Jansen inside an hour of the post-lunch session. Kagiso Rabada then sent Ajinkya Rahane back to the pavilion after only a few overs.

The right-arm fast-medium bowler Kagiso Rabada was outstanding with his line and lengths in the first innings. In fact, the battle between Rabada and Virat was one of the day’s main highlights. Virat had a lot of trouble with Rabada’s fiery deliveries. The charismatic Indian Captain had attacked him in an attempt to disrupt his rhythm. The South African pacer eventually won the battle by dismissing Virat Kohli after the tea break. Virat Kohli batted patiently but fell short of scoring his 28th Test century. He made 77 off 201 balls.

Rishab Pant and Shardul Thakur provided solid support in the middle for Virat Kohli as the Indian innings progressed. India were bowled out for a low total after 77.3 overs in the first innings. South Africa’s most successful bowler was Kagiso Rabada, who got four wickets, and Marco Jansen took three wickets.

The ongoing first innings of South Africa

South Africa responded by scoring 17 runs for the loss of Dean Elgar at the end of day one. Medium-pacer Jasprit Bumrah dismissed the left-hander with a brilliant in-swinging ball. Bumrah was outstanding in the closing hour of day one, bowling four overs without conceding a run. He will be a key player for India on day 2. Aiden Markram (8*) and Keshav Maharaj (6*) have stayed unbeaten at the crease.

South Africa will almost certainly try for a strong first-innings lead, which will be difficult to achieve at Newlands in Cape Town.

Bottom Line

South Africa have a huge opportunity of taking control of the third Test if they bat well on day 2. South African batters must be determined to score 400 runs in order to take a healthy lead in the first innings. On the other side, India have to keep South Africa to under 250 runs to stay firm in the game. The current Indian Test bowling lineup is one of the best in the world, and they can surely disrupt the Proteas batting lineup’s rhythm. Overall, the two teams will face off in a gripping battle on the second day of the contest.

Source: United News of Bangladesh