South Africa hail 'genius' of De Villiers

Jasprit Bumrah received his Test cap from captain Virat Kohli

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.

India at the close of play is tottering at 28/3, with both openers and Kohli back in the pavilion.

De Villiers, who had been out of the game for over a year and made his return with jsut concluded Zimbabwe series, scored much needed 65, wherein 44 runs came in boundaries, and helped proteas in posting a respectable 286/10.

"He made the bowlers have to worry about their lengths and I think, you know, that partnership of a 100 runs (between Villiers and Plessis) just really got us back in the game, brought belief back in the change room", Benkenstein said.

Bhuvneshwar, who finished with 4/87, too agreed that De Villiers took the game away from India.

According to news daily, Mid-Day, Azharuddin was quoted saying, "This is a golden opportunity to play attacking cricket and the reason is very simple - India has a strong pace bowling attack and they have been bowling well".

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But India's hopes of earning a first-innings lead were dented as Murali Vijay (1) fell to Vernon Philander and Shikhar Dhawan (16) was caught and bowled by Steyn as the quick finally resumed a Test career derailed by injury.

The biggest prize fell to Morne Morkel, who came on as first change and produced a sharply-lifting delivery which Indian captain Virat Kohli edged to wicketkeeper Quinton de Kock after making just five.

His exploitation of a green Newlands pitch left South Africa initially ruing its gamble to bat first, a decision captain Faf du Plessis said at the toss was a "punt".

Dean Elgar, South Africa's leading batsman during 2017, edged the third ball of the match to be caught behind by Wriddhiman Saha for nought. He added scalps of Aiden Markram (5) and Hashim Amla (3).

But the rest of the South African batting proved resilient.

"Those runs down the order in tough conditions were vital", said Benkenstein.

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