India have had the better of South Africa in most part of the match. In many ways, it’s been the handiwork of the seniors — Zaheer and Harbhajan with the ball and Virender Sehwag, Sachin Tendulkar, MS Dhoni and VVS Laxman with the bat.
The South Africans are slipping by the minute in this Test. Clearly the hosts don’t seem to be carrying any psychological scars from Nagpur. It would have been so easy to suffer from aftershocks.
Here, Dale Steyn was marked for special attention. The visitors’ batting was confronted with aggressive bowling. The hunter became the hunted. Now, the "kill" is expected on the last day, weather permitting.
This clearly has been the decade of Sehwag. One has lost count of the number of times he has set up a game for India. Multan (against Pakistan), Galle (against Sri Lanka), Chennai (against England) and CCI in Mumbai (versus Sri Lanka) come readily to mind. It now looks like Kolkata!
Sachin Tendulkar, meanwhile, remains insatiable. All these runs and centuries have still left him famished — hungry to the extent that he now has reeled off four Test centuries in less than a month. The champion is still up for the battle against the best.
Steyn now must have got an idea how his predecessors, the fast-bowling predators, must have suffered at the little master’s hands. I can still hear a few groans from across the globe!
VVS Laxman, meanwhile, continues his affair with the Eden. The innings could so easily have come apart had Laxman failed on the second day. He didn’t then, nor did he on Tuesday. His 15th Test century is misleading — the genial classicist has missed at least twice as many because of the number at which he bats. That he didn’t on Tuesday was because Dhoni himself had a score to settle.
Dismissed cheaply in Nagpur, and with a maiden defeat to add to his woes, the Indian skipper was clearly a man on a mission. Harris, his nemesis in Nagpur, went for nearly 200 runs. His famous accuracy was nowhere to be seen.