Kohli's blitzkrieg not enough to dampen SA

Pat Wise
January 16, 2018

That took South Africa from 246/3 to 251/6, and what should have been a dominant day at the office became one that India will be more satisfied with.

Having failed in Cape Town, India's big-name batting lineup underperformed again at SuperSport Park with the exception of Kohli, who returned to the kind of form that produced scores of 104 not out, 213, 243 and 50 in his four test innings before this series.

The 27-year-old is the seventh Indian pace bowler to achieve the feat, behind Kapil Dev, Zaheer Khan, Javagal Srinath, Ishant Sharma, Karsan Ghavri and Irfan Pathan. "It's definitely not the sort of conditions we want here in South Africa this week".

Going into the second Test, Kohli had promised intent, and he has made sure that he leads the way with a magnificent game changing 153. "We will look to create pressure tomorrow and pick up some early wickets", Bumrah told reporters here. Shami has so far taken 62 wickets in 19 matches and 38 wickets in ten matches overseas. Notably, the Indian captain had just reached his 21st Test century when the all-rounder committed the "unforgivable error". Kohli completed his 16th Test fifty with a couple in the 36th over but a lapse in concentration saw Vijay edge one to the keeper off Maharaj (1-53). Perhaps, even Kohli didn't know how well he had hit it because he ran hard. It seems a fair balance, particularly with the pitch likely to deteriorate on the final two days as you would hope.

When the umpires decided at 4:45pm that the light was too poor for play to continue, Virat Kohli's face was as dark as the sky above.

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On this pitch, which Morkel said had a "very subcontinental feel to it", Kohli showed he was the master. "We wanted the ball to be dry so what do we do next".

Both the batsmen survived the scare of Indian bowling attack and counterattacked. It came when the combined contribution of others in the top six was 85 runs.

Indian skipper has slammed his 21st century in the ongoing test series against South Africa, taking his global centuries to a total of 53. Kohli's predecessors marbled the path before him with a limitless bounty of legendary innings, but none came to Africa and tamed the beast that has big men hurling pride from 22 yards.

Talking about captain Virat Kohli's innings, Bumrah said: "Virat's innings was very crucial for us and he brought us back in the game". "We lost a few early wickets yesterday as well, so he was playing an anchor role and till the end he was fighting with us". He took the lead in a 79-run partnership with Vijay (46), making 51 of those 79 runs.

That was not what concerned the South African opening pair however - getting through that first session unscathed was all that matters and in that regard, it was a job very well done by Markram and Elgar.

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