While India made history by winning their first test match in Centurion, South Africa came back strongly in the second match at Johannesburg where they have never beaten India before. Indian bowlers were unable to pick up wickets in the second test match and SA chased down 240 runs with seven wickets in hand.
According to former SA pacer, Fanie de Villiers, Newlands will be a tester for the batters of both sides as the pitch usually offers seam movement and uneven bounce, and therefore the Indian bowlers have an advantage due to the variations they have in their bowling attack. “India’s bowlers have got an excellent chance to win it because there are a lot of variations in the Indian bowling attack,” said De Villiers to Indian Express.
India’s Shardul Thakur picked up 8 wickets in the match, the seven of them from the first innings. “Your all-rounder (Shardul Thakur) is bowling better than ours. India have got a very good chance to win the match and series,” said the former SA Pacer. India will be bolstered by the return of Virat Kohli and there are speculations that Ishant Sharma will return to the squad in place of Mohammad Siraj who pulled his hamstring. Hanuma Vihari is likely to be left out.
In the last few years, India has won test matches on away tours purely because of their pace battery. The recent winnings in England, where India are currently leading by 2 – 1 was the testimony of fiery spells from the likes of Bumrah and Shami who also contributed with the bat.
In the thirty years of touring South Africa, India has never been able to win the test match series and critics pointed out that this is the best opportunity for India to create history. The third test match will start from the 11th of January.