Published: Sun, January 07, 2018
Sports | By Phillip Butler

India rattles South Africa in first Test as Kumar takes four wickets

India rattles South Africa in first Test as Kumar takes four wickets

Dale Steyn marked his long-awaited return to worldwide cricket with a wicket as India ended day one of the first Test three down, losing Virat Kohli cheaply after Bhuvneshwar Kumar helped bowl South Africa out.

Less than three overs after de Villiers' dismissal, du Plessis, who had narrowly survived an lbw review by India, was gone edging Pandya behind.

"They are a quality bowling attack and at that stage I was sitting there wondering how we were going to score a run", said South African batting coach Dale Benkenstein.

De Villiers and Du Plessis put on 114 for the fourth wicket, with De Villiers in sparkling form as he hit 65 off 84 balls with 11 fours. "He made the bowlers worry about their lengths".

Just as the Proteas had recovered from losing three wickets in nearly no time at all, De Villiers was clean bowled by debutant Jasprit Bumrah for 65, which came off 84 balls and included 11 boundaries. "When it comes to AB de Villiers, he is the best in the world and you have to be at your best to bowl to him".

Thanks to the admirable combination of enterprise and talent from No 7 batsman Hardik Pandya, India were able to stay at the races, as they say, on the still engrossing but slightly less high-octane second day's play. Murali Vijay (1), Shikhar Dhawan (16) and skipper Virat Kohli (5) were the batsmen dismissed.

After electing to bat first, Du Plessis, who was making his return after recovering from a viral illness and back and shoulder injuries, would have been hoping for a strong start from his side.

Things went from bad to worse for India as Kohli was caught behind off the bowling of Morkel for five runs.

With the pitch offering assistance to bowlers, Bhuvneshwar made the most of the conditions as he sent back opener Dean Elgar for a duck on the third ball of the match.

South Africa were dealt a major blow after senior most pacer Dale Steyn was ruled out for the remainder of three-match series against India after damaging a tissue on his left heel during the second day of the opening Test. The De Villiers-Du Plessis partnership was followed by a sixth wicket stand of 60 off 54 balls from Quinton de Kock and Philander, and there were useful contributions from the tailenders.

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