India reduced SA to 11/1. (Source: BCCI)
R Ashwin took seven wickets in first innings. (Source: BCCI)

India handed a target of 395 to South Africa in the first Test match in Vizag. Riding on second hundred from Rohit Sharma in the match, India piled a total of 323/4 (D) in the second innings. Later, Ravindra Jadeja got rid off dangerous Dean Elgar as the visitors concluded the day’s play at 11/1.


Cheteshwar Pujara: Yes, I think it was a tough pitch. I was finding it difficult to rotate the strike early. Once I was in, I knew I could accelerate.

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We wanted to put up a decent total by tea. Things worked out in my favour and Rohit batted really well so that helped me.

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I think it was the intent that changed after the drinks break. I knew early on I have to get used to the pace and bounce and once I knew that I knew what kind of shots to play on the pitch. It was slower and it wasn’t easy to play my shots but I knew my impact point had to change in my shots. Sometimes just playing one format affects you, but that allowed me work on my fitness and fielding, and I think that worked out well for me.

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Just have to take it in your stride. You need to get back to form ASAP when you play just one format. I got a couple of good balls in WI and it had to be accepted. Failure makes you a better batsman and I knew I was just one knock away from getting back into form. I think there are enough runs on the board and we have 98 overs. Its still a tough pitch to bat on and it’s never easy to play on a two-paced pitch. It’ll spin out of the rough a lot on Day 5 so batting will certainly not be easy. I’ve been working a lot on my fitness and I have started recovering quite well.

Playing XI

Rohit Sharma, Mayank Agarwal, Cheteshwar Pujara, Virat Kohli (c), Ajinkya Rahane, Hanuma Vihari, Wriddhiman Saha (wk), Ravindra Jadeja, Ravichandran Ashwin, Ishant Sharma, Mohammed Shami

South Africa
Aiden Markram, Dean Elgar, Theunis de Bruyn, Temba Bavuma, Faf du Plessis (c), Quinton de Kock (wk), Vernon Philander, Senuran Muthusamy, Keshav Maharaj, Dane Piedt, Kagiso Rabada