Discussion in 'International Game Day' started by TheParraboy, Jan 2, 2018.
some things never change
Great, another once normal thread got the Lag treatment.
Great thread. Pitches n moans.
Fair enough. I'll make sure there aren't any games on. Probably safest to avoid world cup years altogether as well.
Both captains praise surface that produced result with 18 wickets on fourth day as South Africa took a 1-0 series lead
The captains of India and South Africa have hailed the pitch's contribution to the batting carnage that saw 18 wickets fall in a day as South Africa beat India in the first of three Tests.
"The pitch was outstanding," said India captain Virat Kohli after South Africa won the first Test by 72 runs with a day to spare.
"It was great for Test cricket. Both teams were in the game at different stages. As a team we really enjoyed being part of this Test match."
South Africa captain Faf du Plessis added: "This was as good as it gets in Test cricket."
"It was fantastic to be part of it. It definitely ranks as one of my favourite Test matches."
India were bowled out for 135 after being set 208 to win. Player of the match Vernon Philander led the South African attack, which was missing the injured Dale Steyn, taking 6-42.
India had earlier bowled South Africa out for 130 in their second innings, and the visitors are likely to face a four-pronged pace barrage in the second Test starting Sunday at Centurion.
South Africa coach Ottis Gibson said: "When you are playing at home you play to your strengths and at the moment we have some high-quality fast bowlers."
"I’m a very fast bowling-minded kind of coach," said former West Indies player Gibson, explaining why two fast bowlers, Duanne Olivier and Lungi Ngidi, had been added to an already big squad following a series-ending heel injury to Dale Steyn.
Gibson said the balance of the team depended on conditions but added that Centurion usually had pace and bounce, which would incline him towards four fast bowlers.
"If you want to beat the best team in the world, which India are, then maybe we have to do something slightly different to what we've done in the past," said Gibson. "We have to get stuck in and be tough with the bat and the ball. Get in their faces a bit, use our physicality in terms of our pace."
Kohli said he was disappointed with the batting of his number one-ranked team – but felt they had shown they could compete in pace-friendly conditions.
"We needed someone to go out there and score 75 or 80 and we need to sit down and talk about stringing together partnerships. You can't afford to lose three or four wickets quickly as we did today," said Kohli.
"Their bowlers create relentless pressure. They force you to play good cricket in every over."
Du Plessis admitted that he was nervous about defending a low target after South Africa lost their last eight wickets for 65 runs.
"The new ball was crucial but I knew that we have got fantastic seam bowlers," du Plessis said.
Losing Steyn to a left heel injury is a huge blow but du Plessis praised the character of the injured bowler who came out to bat with nine wickets down in an effort to shepherd top-scorer AB de Villiers to a bigger score.
"We didn’t want Dale to bat unless AB was still there because we didn’t want him to make his injury worse. But he wanted to do it," said Du Plessis.
With Steyn unable to run, de Villiers needed to hit boundaries. Kohli placed eight fielders on the boundary and one of them caught de Villiers without adding to his 35 runs. "We didn’t get the runs but it was the mindset that counts," said du Plessis.
It was a match that was full of drama from the first morning when South Africa crashed to 3-12 after choosing to bat on a seaming pitch.
"We’re a team that is prepared to take risk to try to win matches," said du Plessis. "We knew the pitch would speed up. We were surprised how quick it was on the first day but today was very difficult for batsmen."
Counter-attacking batting by De Villiers and Du Plessis enabled South Africa to make a competitive 286, leading Kohli to regret that India had not taken their chances to bowl them out for a lower total.
But he said the bowlers had rectified their mistakes in the second innings, giving him confidence that they could push South Africa hard at Centurion.
"We need the batsmen to apply themselves and show more character. But if we get a lively wicket our bowlers can exploit their batting again."
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