Pune, Oct 12: Ravichandran Ashwin and Umesh Yadav emerged as the pick of the bowlers as India restricted South Africa for 275 in their first innings and took a massive 326-run lead at the end of the play on the third day of Pune Test on Saturday (October 12).
However, Keshav Maharaj (72) and Vernon Philander (44*) frustrated the hosts with a partnership of 109 runs for the ninth wicket and delayed the inevitable for a long period of time after their top-order once again crumbled in front of a quality Indian pace attack. Maharaj was dismissed by Ashwin after the right-handed batsman faced 131 deliveries.
Umesh Yadav (3-37) and R Ashwin (4-69) returned with impressive figures with the ball while Mohammed Shami (2-44) and Ravindra Jadeja (1-81) were also amongst the wicket-takers.
For South Africa, captain Faf du Plessis (64) was the lone batsman who offered some resistance to the Indian bowlers at the top of the batting order. Barring him, no batsman looked to trouble the Indians.
Earlier in the day, Theunis de Bruyn and Anrich Nortje resumed Protea innings on the third day but the duo didn't last long at the crease and perished in the morning session itself. Quinton de Kock was looking in sublime touch as he forged a fifty partnership with the skipper but he was clean bowled by Ashwin for 31 with a beauty. Senuran Muthusamy (7) and Kagiso Rabada (2) were also dismissed cheaply. Rabada was the last Protea wicket to perish as their entire innings lasted 105.4 overs.
Earlier on day two, Dean Elgar (6), Aiden Markram (0) and Temba Bavuma (8) were dismissed cheaply by Indian pacers in the 15-overs' spell before the umpires signalled stumps.
Earlier, riding on an unbeaten 254 from their talismanic captain Virat Kohli and a century from Mayank Agarwal (108) along with the fifties from Cheteshwar Pujara, Ajinkya Rahane and Ravindra Jadeja, India posted a mammoth 601/5 in the first innings.
Here's how Day 3 panned out:
50 wickets against SA for Ashwin, fourth Indian after Kumble (84), Srinath (64) and Harbhajan (60).
Wicket! Ashwin traps Rabada (2) in front and with this South Africa's 1st innings comes to an end for 275. India take a massive 326 run lead. And that's STUMPS on Day 3.
India lose DRS! Jadeja appealed for Kagiso Rabada's caught behind but the umpire wasn't interested. The ultra-edge showed there was no contact between bat and ball. Review lost.
Wicket! Finally! R Ashwin breaks the partnership as Keshav Maharaj's defiant knock comes to an end for 72. Rohit takes a good catch at leg slip. SA - 271/9 in 101.4 overs.
100-Run Partnership between Maharaj & Philander. South Africa reach 262/8 in 97 overs. This is has been a brilliant performance from #9 & #10 batters.
250 comes up for the Proteas in the 94th over. The partnership between Maharaj and Philander is worth 91*. These two have set an example for the top-order on how to bat in the Indian sub-continent.
50! Maiden Test Fifty for Keshav Maharaj. Entire dressing room stands to appreciate his knock.
Dropped! Ashwin dives towards his right to catch Maharaj off his own delivery but fails to hold on to it. Tough attempt.
Philander and Maharaj have achieved a few feats with their resistance in Pune.
The longest (in terms of balls) they have batted in their Test career— Mohandas Menon (@mohanstatsman) October 12, 2019
144* - Vernon Philander (prev: 143 balls at Perth in Nov 2016)
92* - Keshav Maharaj (prev: 54 balls at Centurion in Jan 2018 vs India!)#IndvSA #IndvsSA
Four! Maharaj gets a boundary off Ashwin and moves into his 40s. SA reach 236/8 in 89 overs.
The wait continues for India as the ninth-wicket partnership is worth 59 runs. Proteas 221/8 as light is fading slowly.
Maharaj, Philander continue resistance. It's 212/8
Play resumes after tea break. Keshav Maharaj and Vernon Philander resume batting.
Tea Break! South Africa 197/8 in 77 overs. They trail India by another 404 runs. Philander - 23* and Maharaj - 21* have showed some resistance with a 35-run stand between them and ensured this session is shared.
13225 - ATTENDANCE at MCA Stadium, Pune on Day 3
After 63 overs, South Africa are 170/8. Vernon Philander (17*) and Keshav Maharaj (4*) are present in the middle for the tourists.
Wicket! Faf du Plessis (64) edges Ashwin and Rahane takes sharp catch at slip cordon. SA - 162/8 in 58.3 overs, trail India by 439 runs.
Rohit Sharma will be bowling the first over in this innings.
150 comes up for South Africa for the loss of 7 wickets. SA - 152/7 in 54 overs, trail India by 449 runs.
Wicket! Ravindra Jadeja traps Senuran Muthusamy (7) in front. The umpire gives him out because the batsman didn't offer any shot. He went upstairs to review but to no avail. This is the first time he's been dismissed in Test cricket. SA - 139/7 in 44.2 overs.
Play resumes after lunch break. Jadeja will bowl the first over in this session.
Lunch Break! South Africa 136/6 in 42 overs. Muthusamy and du Plessis will resume batting after lunch as SA trail India by 465 runs. They've lost 3 wickets and scored 100 runs in this session.
Wicket! R Ashwin strikes as he clean bowls Quinton de Kock (31). De Kock stared at the stumps in disbelief before making his descent towards the pavilion. South Africa - 128/6 in 38 overs.
Faf du Plessis notches up a quickfire half-century off 64 deliveries. This is his 21st Test fifty. The captain is showing some resistance along with Quinton de Kock. SA - 124/5 in 37 overs.
Four! 100 up for South Africa with a boundary from Quinton de Kock. With that shot came the 50-run partnership between him and Faf du Plessis.
SIX!! First maximum of the innings and it came from the bat of their skipper Faf du Plessis off Jadeja.
Ishant Sharma receives second warning from the umpire for stepping on the danger area. One more time and he'll be banned from bowling. Ishant shifts to round the wicket now.
South Africa reach 67/5 in 26 overs, trail India by 534 runs Faf du Plessis - 15* Quinton de Kock - 5*
Ishant gets first warning for running over the danger end.
R Ashwin has been introduced by skipper Kohli
Wicket! Set Theunis de Bruyn (30) gets a thick edge off Umesh Yadav and Wriddhiman Saha takes a stunning catch diving towards his right. Third wicket for Umesh. SA - 53/5
In lighter vein SA Batting coach Amol Muzumdar should pad up for the next Test.— Makarand Waingankar (@wmakarand) October 12, 2019
50 up for South Africa for the loss of 4 wickets.
Wicket! Nightwatchman Anrich Nortje (3) nicks the short-pitched delivery from Mohammad Shami and Virat Kohli takes fine catch in the second slip. SA 41/4
Umesh Yadav bowls the second over of the day.
Four! De Bruyn gets the first runs of the day with a boundary. Shami bowled on to his pads and the batsman just guided it towards mid-on region.
Day 3: SA overnight batsmen Theunis de Bruyn and Anrich Nortje are in the middle to resume batting. Mohammad Shami to start the proceedings with the ball.