Keegan Petersen Admits Virat Kohli And Cheteshwar Pujara Have Been A Headache For Proteas In The 3rd Test 1
Virat Kohli and Cheteshwar Pujara

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Keegan Petersen, the South African batsman said Indian skipper Virat Kohli and No 3 Cheteshwar Pujara have been a “bit of a headache” for South Africa and the team will look to get them early on Day 3 of the series-deciding third and final Test.

India lost both their openers cheaply once again in the second innings but Cheteshwar Pujara (9) and Virat Kohli (14) thereafter took charge of the proceedings and saw through the second day to take their overall lead to 70 runs.

Virat Kohli Cheteshwar Pujara would be the key for India in the third day of the third Test played at Newlands, Cape Town@ Twitter/ ICC
Virat Kohli Cheteshwar Pujara would be the key for India in the third day of the third Test played at Newlands, Cape Town@ Twitter/ ICC

Keegan Petersen Reckons The Key Would Be To Pick Up A Few Early Wickets While Admitting Virat Kohli And Cheteshwar Pujara Have  Been A Headache

In the first innings, Virat Kohli top-scored with a well-crafted 79 off 201 balls, while Cheteshwar Pujara gave fine assistance with a 77-ball 43 to steady the proceedings after KL Rahul and Mayank Agarwal were dismissed early.

“The key would be to pick up a few early wickets tomorrow morning… The two batting now have been a bit of a headache for us in the last couple of innings,” Keegan Petersen said in the media interaction after the end of day two’s proceedings.

“He’s (Kohli) one of the best batters in the world and he’s shown that time and again. Yes, he will be the big wicket tomorrow and if we can get his wicket early, it will open up the game.

Keegan Petersen Picture Credit: IANS twitter profile
Keegan Petersen Picture Credit: IANS Twitter profile

Keegan Petersen, who hit 72 off 166 balls, was the top scorer for the home side as they were dismissed by India for 210, conceding a 13-run first-innings lead.

“We would have been happy if we overcame the deficit and got a bit of a lead. That was the plan coming into the game today,” Keegan Petersen said.

Keegan Petersen brought up his second fifty of the series on Wednesday against some top-class Indian pace bowling.

Keegan Petersen: Indian Pace Attack Is Extremely Challenging

The 28-year-old led South Africa’s fightback after Jasprit Bumrah removed the openers early in the series-deciding third Test.

“It’s (the Indian pace attack) extremely challenging. It’s the most challenging I’ve had in my whole career. You have to be focused and on your mark all the time or else they will expose you.”

Jasprit Bumrah (Photo by PETER PARKS / AFP)
Jasprit Bumrah (Photo by PETER PARKS / AFP)

“They test you in terms of scoring, there’s not much of scoring opportunities. They have not given us much. They are arguably one of the best bowling attacks in the world. We knew that coming into the series, it’s been challenging, we just got to deal with it,” Petersen said.

On missing out on a century for the second time in the series, he said: “To be honest, it’s not lack of trying. It’s just eluding us at the moment. Yes, I got close but let the team down by not getting there. But I think it will come eventually.”

On the second of the third Test match at Cape Town, Jasprit Bumrah picked his 7th fifer in Test cricket as he delivered a terrific spell with figures of 23.3-8-42-5. It’s notable that India never lost a Test match when Jasprit Bumrah took a fifer.

In fact, out of 6 fifers previously, only one match was ended in a draw as the fifth day was washed out in Nottingham 2021 otherwise all other five occasions- Johannesburg (2018), Nottingham (2018), Melbourne (2018), North Sound (2019), Kingston (2019), his fifer played a key role in India’s historic wins.

India ended Day 2 with their scorecard reading 57/2, and are currently ahead by 70 runs. Both Indian openers were once again dismissed cheaply. His opening partner, KL Rahul followed him to the dressing room in the very next over. Marco Jansen bowled a full-length delivery, as KL Rahul edged the cherry to Aiden Markram in the slip cordon.