In a sensational turnaround of fortunes, India scripted a famous 63-run win over South Africa on the fourth day of the third Test on Saturday. Set to chase 242 for victory, fast bowler Mohammad Shami triggered a dramatic South African collapse in the post-tea season.
Ishant Sharma opened the floodgates when he castled Faf du Plessis when the South African captain failed to keep his bat down. Jasprit Bumrah trapped Quinton de Kock in front before Shami began his magic spell by running through the South African tail.
Even as Dean Elgar continued to frustrate the Indian attack with a dogged batting, Shami delivered the death blow by taking the wicket of Veron Philander, who played on while playing a pull shot. AL Phehlukwayo got inside edge to be bowled. Indian were on top as Bhuvaneshwar Kumar had the stubborn Rabada caught at first slip.
Shami completed the demolition job by removing Morne Morkel (bowled) and Lungi Ngidi to finish a wonderful five-wicket haul. The Indians had to take the help of DRS to dismiss Nigidi, who had got a faint edge on the way to the substitute wicketkeeper Dinesh Karthik. Elgar remained unbeaten with a gritty 86.
Earlier, Elgar and Amla hit gritty half-centuries as South Africa reached 136 for 3 at tea. Amla and Elgar added 119 runs off 304 balls for the second wicket. However, India got breakthrough when Ishant Sharma dismissed Amla, while Bumrah accounted for AB de Villiers to give India a glimmer of hope.
In the morning, India struggled to string together a bowling partnership that could put Elgar-Amla under pressure. Soon the duo raised a 100-run stand, the first in this Test, and Elgar reached his 10th Test half-century off 153 balls. At the other end, Amla crossed 50 off 134 balls, his 38th in Test cricket. It was also the 9th time that he scored twin half-centuries in the same Test.
At the team arrived on schedule but had to wait for better conditions for play to resume. The umpires – Aleem Dar and Ian Gould – had two inspections at 10 am and 10.30 am (local time). After the second inspection, they were happy enough to allow play to resume 30 minutes later. Finally the game began at 11 am local time, with all three sessions rescheduled, after an hour’s delay. The morning session was 90 minutes long.
India kept their record intact as they had never lost a match in Wanderers