South Africa faced another batting debacle in the third Test against India and were staring to a massive defeat in Ranchi on Monday. The Proteas lost wickets in a heap on Day 3 to face a follow-on and only a miracle could save them the humiliation. Responding to the hosts’ 497 for 9 declared, Faf du Plessis’ side resumed from their overnight score of 9 for 2 only to get bowled out for 162 in the first innings. India asked them to follow on and they were reeling at 132 for 8 in their second innings at the time of writing this report, requiring another 204 runs to make the hosts bat again.
Ace commentator and analyst Harsha Bhogle was disappointed to see the South Africans’ meek capitulation and called their performance in this series in a tweet as “inexplicable”. South Africa lost the first two Tests in Visakhapatnam and Pune by 203 runs and by an innings and 137 runs, respectively. They had also lost a four-Test series 0-3 last time they toured India in 2015. The Proteas’ last Test win in India came in 2009-10 while their only Test series on the Indian soil happened in 2000.
SA face two follow-ons in a row; Harsha Bhogle disappointed
The follow-on in Ranchi meant du Plessis’ side faced the humiliation for the second consecutive time in this series. Also, a loss in Ranchi will mean SA losing four Tests in a row against their Asian opponents who won the third match in SA last year after losing the first two.
In his tweet, the 58-year-old Harsha Bhogle said as someone who has greatly admired South African cricket over the years, the surrender in this series was “inexplicable”. He conceded that there are issues that are haunting SA cricket at the moment but yet failed to convince himself about the performance that the visitors came up with.
For someone who has admired South African cricket greatly, this is inexplicable. I know there are many issues but none that can explain this capitulation
— Harsha Bhogle (@bhogleharsha) October 21, 2019
After the Indian bowlers shared the exploits in the first innings with pacer Umesh Yadav taking three wickets, it was Mohammed Shami who cornered the Proteas in the second innings. In nine overs, the Indian spearhead gave just 10 runs and claimed three scalps.
In terms of points in the ICC World Test Championship, India will raise their points tally to 240 with a win in Ranchi. In the second place are New Zealand and Sri Lanka with only 60 points each.
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