India chasing 208 for victory

India chasing 208 for victory

Indian pacers produced a sensational exhibition of fast bowling as South Africa suffered an extraordinary collapse in the opening session of the fourth day's play of the first Test here at Newlands on Monday.

Mohammad Shami (3/28), Jasprit Bumrah (3/39) and Bhuvneshwar Kumar (2/33) shared the spoils to pack off the hosts for a modest 130 all out in 41.2 overs. AB de Villiers (35) waged a lone battle in the face a relentlessly hostile attack by Indian pacers before being dismissed as the last man at the strokes of lunch. South Africa, who had a lead of 77 runs in first innings, thus set India a target of 208 runs, just one run less than what they managed in their first innings. Having resumed their innings at 65/2, the home team lost its remaining eight wickets for the addition of just 65 runs.  

With Dale Steyn, who braved a serious injury to come out to bat, unable to bowl, India would definitely fancy their chances of winning the match at a ground where they have never won in their four previous visits.

Shami, after a below par show in the first innings, was at his menacing best while Bumrah didn't let the pressure go off with twin strikes in quick succession. Having seen Shami and Bumrah reap benefits of good bowling, Bhuvneshwar got into the thick of things by removing Keshav Maharaj and Morne Morkel to provide India with a genuine chance of winning the match.

Shami struck with the third ball of the day when Hashim Amla once again fished outside off. Rohit Sharma took a low catch at gully even as Amla stood his ground. The umpires went upstairs but the replays remained inconclusive. Amla, however, had to go as the soft signal from Richard Kettleborough was out. That set the cat among pigeons. Shami soon had night watchman Kagiso Rabada in a spell of 4-2-8-2 before Bumrah produced two peach of deliveries to account for skipper Faf du Plessis and Quinton de Kock.

Kohli brought back Shami and it paid off immediately as the right-arm quick trapped Vernon Philander with an incoming delivery. Back into attack after a lengthy break, Bhuvneshwar struck twice in two back to back overs to pack off Keshav Maharaj and Morne Morkel. With only Steyn for company, de Villiers had to go for his shots and in one of those attempts he holed out to deep midwicket for Bumrah's third wicket.

Brief scores: South Africa: 286 and (O/n: 65/2): 130 all out (Mohammad Shami 3/28, Jasprit Bumrah 3/39, Bhuvneshwar Kumar 2/33, Hardik Pandya 2/27) vs India: 209.  

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