Abril 26, 2018

Smart changes can script a win for Virat Kohli at Centurion

14 Enero 2018, 12:15 | Crisanna Felipe

Virat Kohli got a start in the second innings but was unable to convert it into a substantial contribution

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"There is a thick layer of ground grass on it, which is not something we're used to seeing". "Our culture is strong on making sure that when young guys come into the team that we treat them as though they have played 50 or 70 or 100 Tests", he revealed.

His counterpart on the other hand, never mind being nonplussed about the surface, seemed downright pleased.

He said, "It looks like a really lively pitch".

The Proteas have requested a greenish wicket that will offer pace and bounce‚ but the skipper said they go into the second test against India on Saturday not knowing how the pitch will play over the next five days. They are born and brought up on those pitches.

"Cricket is a psychological game - a lot goes on in the head in terms, for example, of shrewdness, resilience, bluff, individualism and team spirit", he says.

The second Test at Centurion is the 34th of his captaincy career and just one man has featured in the playing XI of all 34 Tests.

So, with Dale Steyn out of the series, which seamer to choose then? If they indeed opt for Ngidi, then South Africa will have three pacers, the other being Kagiso Rabada, consistently banging the ball in at over 145 kmph. Play the SL vs IND ODI challenge and win cash prizes daily! The bowler sprinted alongwith Du Plessis, collected the ball and threw it to Amla's end on the turn.

"He is a promising youngster, so with some pace and bounce we are looking forward to seeing what he can do", Du Plessis said.

"He's a different kind of bowler to the rest of the South African attack, he has different strengths".

Only Marlon Aronstam (in conjunction with Hansie Cronje) and Mitchell Johnson have been able to beat South Africa in Test matches at SuperSport Park. With both Dhawan and Vijay not doing themselves any favours, especially the former for having been sloppy in the field too, the team management can be expected to take some stern decisions.

Kohli's not free of selection headaches either, but he appeared delighted that a variety of options were open to him.

Cape Town: The ignored trio of K L Rahul, Ajinkya Rahane and Ishant Sharma were part of an optional practice session at Newlands, even as South Africa coach Ottis Gibson warned they would continue to torment India with pace.

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It might be hard to fit Ishant in the XI though, given the performances of the Indian pace pack, particularly in the second innings, at Newlands.

Granted Rahul did not get enough match practice in the long format during the run up to the tour, while vice-captain Rahane was frustratingly out of form during the past few weeks. "Bhuvneshwar had performed well in Cape Town and excluding him like this isn't justified", he added.

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