Team India has in complete control of the second Test of the three-match series against South Africa at the MCA Stadium in Pune. With a first-innings trail of 565 runs and seven wickets in hand, chances for South Africa to make a comeback look bleak. The reason for the hosts’ dominance has been owing to the partnership of 225 runs for the fifth wicket between Indian skipper Virat Kohli and Ravindra Jadeja, who was promoted up the order.
Kohli notched his seventh Test double century as he scored 254* with 33 fours and a couple of sixes. Jadeja was unfortunate to not get his second Test century as on 91 as Senuran Muthusamy got rid of him. Immediately after, India went on to score at 601 for five in 156.3 overs.
Meanwhile, the Indian deputy skipper in Test, Ajinkya Rahane reckoned that it wasn’t a 600-run strip in Pune and it was only because of the brilliant partnership between Virat and Jadeja which helped them to do so. He also lauded Mayank Agarwal for building the platform for the massive score with his second century on the first day.
In teh post-match press conference, Rahane said, “The way we batted (took us to a score in excess of 600). There was assistance for fast bowlers, Mayank batted well. It was important to play that one hour really well in the morning. We were thinking about 500+. The manner in which Virat and Jaddu batted, it looked so easy from the outside. I don’t think it’s a 600+ wicket, it’s a 450-500 runs wicket.”
From a personal front, Rahane also played wonderful knock as he scored 59 runs off 168 balls with the help of eight boundaries. He also shared a 178-run partnership with Kohli before perishing to Keshav Maharaj, who picked up his 100th Test wicket with the solitary wicket he got in the innings. Rahane stated that his stand with the captain was important for India.
Rahane explained, “We (himself and Kohli) enjoy each others’ company. We communicate really well whenever we bat together. We knew we were one batsman short and we had to get that partnership going. That partnership between us was really important.”