Pragyan Ojha certain of removal of some key players from the Indian Test squad after yet another series loss on South African soil on Friday.
The Indian team has been humbled by a comparatively weaker South African side on paper, as they lose the third Test match at the Newlands stadium in Cape Town by 7 wickets to let go of a wonderful opportunity to win their maiden Test series on South African soil.
Chasing the target of 212, Dean Elgar’s men required another 111 runs on Day 4, with as many as 8 wickets remaining in their bank. Given India’s recent performances, especially in overseas Tests off late, the fans and experts of the game expected them to surely give it their all to make it a hard task for an inexperienced Proteas batting line-up.
But, Keegan Petersen (82) and Rassie Van der Dussen (41), and later Temba Bavuma (32) batted in the impressive manner they’ve had throughout the series to cross the line with the least possible hiccups against a potent Indian pace attack led by Jasprit Bumrah.
Speaking during the post-match presentation, Indian skipper Virat Kohli didn’t mince his words to blame it on the batters as the reason for yet another series loss in South Africa.
Former India spinner Pragyan Ojha too, has exclaimed that a few players have now made it difficult for them to make it again into the Indian Test team.
Pragyan Ojha certain of removal of some key players
No points for guessing that Ojha’s comment was directed at the two Indian mainstay batters in Cheteshwar Pujara and Ajinkya Rahane.
— Pragyan Ojha (@pragyanojha) January 14, 2022
While their selection for the Test series was already a point of contention given their consistent ordinary performances with the bat for at least the past two years, both Pujara (43, 9) and Rahane (9, 1) failed to abide by the selectors’ faith with yet another disappointing performance in the Cape Town Test as well.
While the duo have come up with a couple of decent 40s and a half-century each (during the 2nd Test match at Johannesberg), they have lost their wickets at crucial junctures to make way for regular batting collapses throughout the series.
Team India have in fact, scored in excess of 300 only once during the first Test at Centurion, and basically it were the middle order batters of the two sides who ultimately made the difference in the series result.
Moreover, a simple glance at the duo’s recent record in Tests for India, provides enough evidence that they have been more than a touch lucky for having been given such a long rope.