Legendary Sunil Gavaskar criticised India captain Virat Kohli’s tactics after lunch after they lost the match by seven wickets and the series
2-1 on Day 4 of the third Test against South Africa at the Newlands in Cape
Town on Friday. The loss shattered India’s hope of completing a historic series
win in South Africa as the home side chased down a below-par 212-run target to
win the series decider and bag the series, coming back from the loss
in the first Test.
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South Africa were needed only 41 runs to win the
match with seven wickets in hand. In the second session, the Proteas took just
8.3 overs to score the remaining runs and register a comprehensive victory.
India did not use Jasprit Bumrah, Mohammed Shami and Shardul Thakur during
these overs which surprised Gavaskar.
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“It was a mystery to me why Shardul Thakur and
Jasprit Bumrah did not bowl after Lunch. It was almost as if India had decided
that they are not going to win this,” Gavaskar said on commentary.
Captain Virat Kohli used only Umesh Yadav and
Ravichandran Ashwin in the second session as South Africa raced to victory,
with Temba Bavuma (32) hitting the winning boundary off Ashwin. Rassie van der
Dussen scored 41 not out.
Also Read: South Africa beat India by 7 wickets to win Test series 2-1 on Day 4
Gavaskar also pointed his finger towards Kohli’s
defensive field placements when Ashwin was bowling.
“The field placements there were for Ashwin
(was not right)… There were singles available easily. Five fielders were in the deep. Let the
batters take a chance that is your only opportunity to get them out,” said
the former India captain.
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However, the former India captain, Gavaskar, did
give South Africa credit for their coming from behind series win. This was
the second time in a row they defeated India by seven wickets without much
“The pitches weren’t the best for batting but
the application shown by the South Africans in Johannesburg, the application
shown by them in this Test as well has been praiseworthy. That showed the
character of the team,” he said.
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Keegan Petersen, who made his debut against West
Indies in June 2021, was the star of the match. In a low-scoring match where
both sides struggled to post 200 plus total in the first innings, Petersen
scored 72 in the first innings and 82 in the second to power South Africa to
victory. The right-hander got a standing ovation when was returning to the
pavilion after playing the anchor’s role in South Africa’s victory.