Centurion Test: Proteas ask India to field first


After the third day of the first Test between South Africa and India was washed out due to rains, Monday is likely to see some action at Cape Town's Newlands Stadium with the rain gods finally relenting.

After the Indian batting failed the team on both occasions, some changes in the playing XI are obvious.

Vice-captain Ajinkya Rahane, who was benched in the first Test, may have to wait for another match before getting a game. Shikhar Dhawan, in all likelihood, looks certain to make way for KL Rahul. He has done well in South Africa, in all conditions actually away from home.

Great batsmen adjust quicker. "Before the first Test no-one thought that he should be in the eleven and now suddenly people are looking at the other option", Kohli said on the eve of the second Test, here.

Get latest news & live updates on the go on your pc with. "We expected it and we wanted it to be that way".

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Ahead of the second Test in Centurion, Virat Kohli and Co. are apparently busy gearing up for the upcoming Test. Shaking off the Cape Town loss, team India could be spotted at the nets not only sweating it out but also improvising and innovating their roles as well. You definitely need that to win Test matches but you also need a solid batting performance.

No one can allege that India win Tests on doctored pitches any longer.

The Indians may ask themselves, given how well they bowled in South Africa's second innings, if all of them are needed, because that will relate to how they strengthen the area of their game where they were weakest - their batting.

I was surprised by the way M Vijay batted at Newlands.

Markram, who was raised just a few kilometres from the Centurion Park stadium, will resume after the interval on 51 along with a more cautious Dean Elgar, who has 26.

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Since World Cup 2015, Amla has scored 1833 runs in 29 tests at an average of only 39, and that becomes even worse if you remove his recent figures against Bangladesh. That is, if he plays. "It was always going to be a challenge for India especially after it had just played Sri Lanka", he said. "If you do that against a strong team like India they will pounce on you".

We expect the more ruthless team to come out on top but feel this is too close to call.

"We'll look at things like are the conditions suited to four fast bowlers".

The case for Rahul being included in the first Test itself looked justified, given that the 25-year-old was in good touch, barring the last Test match he played in Nagpur.

Then, in Kohli, Rohit and Pandya, India have three attacking batsmen who can put South Africa off their game, when that Kookaburra ball gets a bit soft.

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The fast bowling attack is unlikely to undergo any changes.