South Africa started Day 2 of the second Test on 379 for 6, after India came back really strong at the end of Day 1 to keep themselves alive in the game. Faf du Plessis and Keshav Maharaj started proceedings on Day 2 but the hosts soon lost Maharaj at 282. Maharaj was out for 14 off Mohammed Shami’s bowling. Keshav’s wicket meant Shami had reached a tally of 100 Test wickets — a little milestone ticked. But what really stood out in the first hour of play was India’s woeful fielding, especially catching. India dropped catches twice off Rabada’s shots. It happened off the bowling of Ravichandran Ashwin, who was eyeing his fourth wicket.
So here is what happened:
It was the 104th over of the match. Stuck to the crease, Rabada went for an extravagant drive on the off-side only to edge it to Parthiv, who could not collect it. Virat Kohli was at first slip and the ball parried to him after hitting the gloves of Parthiv. It came low to the right of Virat, but he could not hold onto it because of which Rabada managed to pick up a couple.
— BCCI (@BCCI) January 14, 2018
Off the very next delivery, Ashwin tossed the ball to Rabada with a slip in place. Rabada danced down the track, Ashwin gave it loop and also got some dip. Though he was nowhere near the pitch of the ball, Rabada still went for the big hit anyway and skewed the ball high over the off-side. Short third man (Shami) and point (Pandya) converged under it. The ball got into Pandya’s hands, but because he got distracted by Shami running across him, he could not catch hold and the ball fell to the ground. Rabada meanwhile picked up a single.
Here is how Twitter reacted to India’s woeful fielding.
— Sharmistha (@_LADY_IN_RED) January 14, 2018
— Paras Rishi (@parasrishi) January 14, 2018
— Himanshu Sharma (@IamHSharma24) January 14, 2018
— Siddharth Jain (@sidjain81) January 14, 2018
— Vijay Venkataramanan (@7th_Samurai) January 14, 2018
— Sandip Das (@dassandip) January 14, 2018
— Rahul (@clickator7) January 14, 2018
— Amey kambli (@Ameykambli2) January 14, 2018
— Krishna _ (@Cric_Lama) January 14, 2018
— Dekh____ _ (@HumorIsRunning) January 14, 2018
To all those saying he scored runs because of dropped catches… Pls shut up. That’s how game goes. Fielding drills are part of Indias coaching problem. Give respect to the lad batting in heat and scoring runs for his team #SAvsIND #INDvSA
— #FreedomSeries #SAVIND (@Cricket_GIF) January 14, 2018
Saha where r u_____. #INDvSA
— Afghanistan cricket fan (@kartcric) January 14, 2018
— SIR .. (@SirJohnRoe) January 14, 2018
— Shuveshek Rai (@shuveshek) January 14, 2018
As we speak, South Africans have folded out for 335. Faf du Plessis’ 63 has put the hosts in a position of strength in the second Test. India needs to put up a big effort to stay afloat in the series. India already trails 0-1 in the 3-match Test series.