India vs South Africa: Former India opener Aakash Chopra

Team India returned to the match in the second half of the first session of the second day of the second Test against South Africa in Johannesburg with three wickets off Shardul Thakur. The medium pacer was lethal as he had earlier removed South Africa captain Dean Elgar to break the partnership. He then made two fine deliveries to dismiss danger man Keegan Pietersen and Rasie van der Dussen. South Africa, once cruising at 88/1, went to 102 for 4 at lunch.

Playing in the team as a fourth pacer and as a lower order batsman who can score important runs, once again he showed his ability to take important wickets. Former India opener and noted commentator Aakash Chopra described Shardul’s role in the team during a lunchtime show on host broadcaster Star Sports.

“Yesterday too, the first hour didn’t suit South Africa and the bowlers, courtesy (Duane) Olivier, came back. Same thing happened with India. Maybe it’s just roller effect. Only 50-60 with (Mohammed) Siraj Percentage, KL Rahul had his hands tied. He had no option but to go for Shardul Thakur and take a wicket. Earlier (spelled) he had bowled only one over and then you start questioning whether he Playing as a batting or bowling all-rounder. He is definitely playing as a bowler,” said Chopra.

Describing the wicket of Dean Elgar picked by Shardul, Chopra said that the bowler had to move the ball a bit to gain the lead as Elgar was batting well. Shardul did the same to send the Proteas captain back to the hut.

“If you look at Siraj’s last over yesterday, that over was not playable. But the longer you stay at the crease, you won’t hit those guys. So, the ball had to move well enough to find the outside edge. Dean Elgar is playing down the straight line and was getting beaten by 6 inches, which is no fluke. Anyone who moves exaggeratedly misses the edge, but it didn’t,” said Chopra. said.

Former South African pacer Morne Morkel lamented the fact that South Africa lost heaps of wickets despite Bumrah and Shami playing well to handle the pressure.

“South Africa absorbed the pressure and the key was to fight through the first hour, go through Shami and Bumrah, and there you can find the scoring options. You can see that Siraj was only bowling at 50 per cent The table was set for South Africa but the game changes so quickly. You can’t lose concentration even for a second as Shardul Thakur comes and breaks South Africa’s top order.”

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