A lackluster bowling performance on day four by the Indian team meant that South Africa cruised to a remarkable 7-wicket victory in Cape Town to win the third Test, to bag the three-match series 2–1. The victory completes a major comeback for the Proteas, who turned the Indians around after losing the first test match of the series at Centurion. First-order batsman Keegan Petersen was the star of the show, as he scored an invaluable 82 runs in the second inning while chasing a target of 212 runs. Petersen was also the top scorer for his team in the early innings, as he had scored a crucial 72 runs to ensure India managed to take a slim 13-run lead.
Marco Jansen collected 7 wickets in the match while Kagiso Rabada contributed 6 wickets to secure India’s sub-par batting performance in both innings. Virat Kohli’s well grafted 79 had helped India post 223 runs in the first innings. The South Africans looked good at one stage to take a big lead in the first innings, but a five-wicket haul from Jasprit Bumrah dragged India back into the match and ensured they took a slim lead as the hosts were eliminated by 210.
But India’s batsmen showed poor application on a pitch that had some rhythm and movement for the closers. Virat Kohli and Rishabh Pant put together an important 94-run position to get India out of trouble, but once Kohli was sent back for 29, Pant took it upon himself to take India’s lead beyond 200 runs, closing out a century. challenging and remaining undefeated at 100 India’s lower order batsmen did not contribute anything of substance.
India was eventually eliminated by 198, giving South Africa a 212-run target to win the match and the series.
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Cheteshwar Pujara and Ajinkya Rahane were India’s biggest disappointments in the series, failing to contribute when the team needed veteran batsmen to do so.
Jasprit Bumrah and Mohammed Shami were the featured bowlers for India in the series.