It was almost a perfect day for Indian cricket, with the Indian batsmen showing strong character on a pitch that was challenging to bat on.
Rahane, Kohli, Bhuvi and the tail were resolute in defence and smart in picking on the loose balls to get the score board ticking.
With Shami picking up Markram early on in South Africa’s second innings, it felt like India could make in-roads into the South Africa top order before end of day’s play today.
But before any of that could happen, a ball from Bumrah hit Elgar on the helmet, and that umpires decided that they had had enough of these ‘body blows’, and couldn’t let the players continue on this rather ‘treacherous’ pitch.
In the post match presser, Rahane, who was India’s top scorer in the 2nd innings, felt that the pitch wasn’t as treacherous as it has been made to seem. The Indian batsmen braved through their innings and the South African batsmen should do the same.
“Wicket was challenging. It was similar for both the teams. [Murali] Vijay scored 25 runs. Our openers played well. When me and Bhuvi [Bhuvneshwar Kumar] were batting, we were not thinking about the wicket but focusing on the delivery.” Rahane said.
The Mumabi batsman then spoke about how the South Africans were peppering the Indian tail-enders with short stuff, and that they faced all of it without raising any objections against the pitch.
“What about them bowling short balls to our bowlers. When Ishant [Sharma], Bhuvi, [Mohammed] Shami and [Jasprit] Bumrah were batting, everyone was bowling bouncers. I don’t think it is a dangerous wicket, yes, it is a challenging wicket,” he said.
Rahane was also quick to point out that nobody was questioning the pitch when Amla had played that gritty knock of 60 odd.
“New ball is challenging but you cannot call it dangerous, When Amla got 60, no one talked about the pitch. Everybody talked about how he played,” the Indian vice-captain said.
“I hope Elgar is fine, but I don’t think pitch is too dangerous. I don’t know what the ICC is going to do, but as a team our focus is to get on with the game,” he added.
The match officials and umpires have decided to let the game on. Tune into Sony Ten tomorrow at 1:30 pm