Shardul Thakur finished with figures of 7/61 against South Africa in Johannesburg© AFP
Shardul Thakur produced a remarkable spell of medium pace bowling on a helpful track at the Wanderers Stadium, on day 2 of the second India vs South Africa Test in Johannesburg, to return with figures of 7/61 and in turn created a new record. Shardul’s effort is now the best by an Indian bowler against South Africa in cricket’s longest format. He broke Ravichandran Ashwin’s record of 7/66, which the off-spinner had claimed in Nagpur in 2015.
What is interesting is that the other three top performances by Indian bowlers against South Africa were all by spinners. Harbhajan Singh picked up two 7-fors during his heydays while Ashwin has another 7-for in his kitty, which came in 2019 in Vizag.
Shardul’s effort will definitely go down as one of the finest by an Indian bowler away from home.
His performance ensured India conceded only a 27-run lead as South Africa were bowled out for 229 in their first innings. India had earlier managed to score 202 after the South African pacers produced a disciplined performance with the ball.
He dismissed Dean Elgar, Keegan Petersen, Rassie van der Dussen, Kyle Verreynne and Temba Bavuma, Marco Jansen and Lungi Ngidi, respectively, on his way to registering the best figures by an Indian bowler against South Africa. His exploits have got India back in the mix after the South African batters had put on a gritty batting display.
Apart from Shardul, Mohammed Shami took two wickets while Jasprit Bumrah also picked up one wicket.
The visitors lead the three-match series 1-0, having won the first Test in Centurion by 113 runs.
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