Related Links: India Tour of South Africa 2013/14 – Schedule | SA Vs Ind, 2nd Sunfoil Test at Durban – Scorecard
South Africa hammered India by 10 wickets to win the Second and Final Test at Kingsmead in Durban on Monday. The Indian batting crumbled on the decisive final day which gifted away the 2-match Test series to South Africa. It was a perfect farewell gift for Jacques Kallis as South Africa had pulled off an incredible victory despite all the weather interruptions and the fact that India were strongly placed at 181 for 1 on Day 1.
Disaster struck the Indian team the very first ball of the day’s play when Virat Kohli was given caught behind off a short of length delivery from Dale Steyn that moved away with bounce. Replays revealed that Kohli was extremely unlucky as the ball had missed his bat and had brushed his back shoulder on its way to the keeper. More trouble was in store for India as another overnight batsman Cheteshwar Pujara got cleaned up by a Dale Steyn beauty that angled in but held its line to somehow clip the off stump.
At 71 for 4, defeat was looming large over India but there was a ray of hope from the Mumbai pair of Rohit Sharma and Ajinkya Rahane. Rohit Sharma, who tamely shouldered arms to get bowled for a first ball duck to Dale Steyn in the first innings, was fighting for his place in the team. Rohit Sharma looked like the most talented batsman of the team, having plenty of time to play the South African quicks. Realizing that, Dale Steyn got the young Rohit Sharma trapped with his sledging. Rohit Sharma though counter sledged Steyn and looked really good at the crease before he was outdone by a reversing inswinger with low bounce from Vernon Philander which had him lbw.
In his brief knock of 25 from 46 balls, Rohit had a superb six off Robin Peterson along with an outstanding pull shot. By lunch time, India was more than certain to lose the Test as MS Dhoni and Ravindra Jadeja departed. MS Dhoni scored 15 before he got out in a soft fashion, flicking Robin Peterson uppishly on the backfoot, off the rough, and straight to short mid wicket. Ravindra Jadeja thought he would hit out of trouble, smashed a fabulous six off Robin Peterson before getting caught trying to repeat the same bravado!
After lunch, India had a new batting hero in Ajinkya Rahane, who with his superb temperament had sealed his place in the XI with a heroic knock, although in vain. Rahane, who looked solid scoring his maiden fifty by lunch, went onto play some calculated shots as he ran out of partners at the other end. Ajinkya Rahane was closing in towards a maiden Test century but when on 96, he missed a slog off Vernon Philander to have a tragic end. Ajinkya Rahane’s 96 came in 157 balls with 11 fours and 2 sixes. It was sure that had there been a specialist batsman supporting Rahane, then he could have easily pulled off a draw for Team India.
Then Indian batsmen of all the South African bowlers, gave as many as four wickets to the innocuous looking left-arm spin of Robin Peterson. Steyn and Philander took three wickets each while Morne Morkel for all the pressure he exerts on the batsmen was unlucky not to get a single wicket.
India having bowled out for 223 in 86 overs atleast managed to avoid an innings defeat and thus leaving South Africa a tiny target of 58. Surprisingly, Jacques Kallis didn’t turn up to bat upfront to satisfy the spectators one last time nor did the Indian bowlers manage to make any inroads. MS Dhoni perhaps gave out a message by not bowling Zaheer Khan for a single over. South Africa wrapped up the run chase taking 11.4 overs with Graeme Smith and Alviro Petersen boosting their averages with unbeaten scores.
Dale Steyn for bagging 9 for 147 was the Man of the Match. AB de Villiers on the other had for his great batting and agile wicket keeping won the Player of the Series award.
Video: MS Dhoni blames umpires for loss Vs South Africa