'It's a special feat to be a part of': Former SA pacer reserves ultimate praise for Kohli's India after Centurion win

Published on Dec 31, 2021 02:33 PM IST

Kohli's India on Thursday became the first Asian side to win a Test in Centurion, ending South Africa's seven-match winning streak at the venue.

India's captain Virat Kohli, second from right, celebrates with teammates at end of the fifth day of the Test Cricket match between South Africa and India at Centurion Park in Pretoria, South Africa, Thursday, Dec. 30, 2021(AP)
India's captain Virat Kohli, second from right, celebrates with teammates at end of the fifth day of the Test Cricket match between South Africa and India at Centurion Park in Pretoria, South Africa, Thursday, Dec. 30, 2021(AP)

Former South African pacer Morne Morkel had the ultimate praise reserved for Virat Kohli-led Team India that scripted a historic 113-run win against South Africa on Thursday in the first Test of the three-match series. Kohli's India became the first Asian side to win a Test in Centurion, ending South Africa's seven-match winning streak at the venue.

Chasing a mighty 305 in the final innings, South African resistance crumbled around captain Dean Elgar's fighting half-century score with Mohammed Shami and Jasprit Bumrah picking three each while Ravichandran Ashwin picked two others in consecutive deliveries after lunch to wrap up the Test inside four days, having lost the entire Day 2 to rain.

Talking to Star Sports after India's resounding win at the SuperSport park, Morkel hailed Kohli's men as "by far the on best team in world".

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"Well Done. They (Team India) are by far the best team in the world today. In a short time now, you deserve it, they've worked long and hard to support their team that can go an compete away from home," Morkel said during the post-match show.

"The clear game plan that the bowlers can take 20 wickets; so enjoy this moment. I think it's a special feat to be a part of. For me, India are definitely leading the way," he added.

With a 1-0 series lead, India now head to the Wanderers in Johannesburg with the aim to become the first Indian side to win a Test series in South Africa.

India have previously visited the Rainbow Nation seven times and lost on six occasion while the one remaining ended in a draw.

India also claimed their maiden win in Centurion on Thursday on three attempts. Sachin Tendulkar's valiant 111 had fallen short in India's maiden appearance at the venue as the visitors lost by an innings in 2010. Eight years later, Kohli's record 153 had went in vain as India suffered a loss in the second Test of the 2018 series.

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