Du Plessis wary of 'unknown' Centurion surface

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Cruising at 246/3, the Proteas then wobbled with two suicidal runouts plaguing what had been an impressive day at the office up until then. The exact reason for his selection is not known but indications are that Wriddhiman Saha, who played in the Newlands Test, is not fully fit. Sehwag feels that keeping Bhuvneshwar out was not justified and Ishant Sharma could have played at someone else's cost. AB de Villiers' aggression in innings of 65 and 35 was a key factor for South Africa.

With only de Villiers offering a fightback, South Africa's lower order did not trouble India. Thereafter captain Faf du Plessis (24) and Keshav Maharaj (10) closed out the day without further damage.

South Africa made only a little in their team by replacing injured Dale Steyn by the local pace sensation Lungi Ngidi, who will make his worldwide debut within the series. While Markram was walking back after falling just short of a hundred, Kohli approached him and said, "Well played, you were unlucky to get out". There is, uneven bounce on the wicket but it is still a good surface to bat on. He was caught at silly point by Murali Vijay in the 30th over.

Markram hit 15 fours but fell just short of a century on his home ground and where he grew up watching cricket, getting a thin edge behind to wicketkeeper Parthiv Patel off Ashwin as he poked at one outside the off stump.

After a satisfying day with the ball, off-spinner R. Ashwin said, given his disappointments in this part of the world in the past, he wanted to make a fresh beginning in this series.

South Africa profited with what could be crucial first innings runs through this period, before Rabada was superbly caught by, ironically, Pandya at deep mid-wicket as he attempted a hook off the excellent Ishant Sharma (3-46). A bowler with less than three wickets a Test has been part of a 20-wicket mission. The second new ball was due but Indian captain Virat Kohli persisted with Ashwin and was rewarded when De Kock edged Ashwin to Kohli at slip to be out first ball.

Du Plessis was at the centre of the next run-out, too, except this time he was the one not interested in a single.

The hosts' misery was compounded when Vernon Philander was also out without scoring, charging down the wicket for a run as Du Plessis screamed at him from the non-striker's end to stop. "We would have liked not to have lost those clump of wickets at the end".

Watch day two of the second Test between South Africa and India, live on Sky Sports Cricket (channel 404) and Sky Sports Main Event (channel 401) from 7.55am on Sunday.