New Delhi: Swashbuckling batsman Hardik Pandya was once again at his best when he counter-attacked the South African attack, which dominated India on Day 2 of the ongoing first Test in Cape Town. Also Read - India vs Australia 2nd ODI: Hardik Pandya Bowls For First Time in Over a Year With Remodelled Action, Picks up Important Wicket of Steve Smith
All-rounder Pandya justified his inclusion scoring a much needed 93 off 95 balls, which included of 14 boundaries and one maximum. Pandya also added an invaluable 99 runs for the 8th wicket with Bhuvneshwar Kumar, who scored 25 runs. Also Read - India vs Australia 2nd ODI, Today Match Report: Steve Smith, David Warner, Glenn Maxwell Shine as Australia Crush India to Take Unassailable Series Lead in Sydney
The Baroda dasher didn’t complicate things and more importantly like AB de Villiers decided to take the attack back to the opposition camp without trying to defend doggedly. He trusted the bounce, got on top of the rising deliveries and played some audacious strokes despite getting two reprieves on 15 and 71 respectively. Also Read - Hardik Pandya Making Changes to His Bowling Action: Report
Also, call it a coincidence, Pandya’s all-round show that gave India a toehold came on the 59th birthday of India’s greatest ever all-rounder Kapil Dev.
Take a look at how cricket fraternity reacted to Pandya’s thrilling knock:
Riding on Pandya’s knock India, who were in tatters at 92 for 7, managed a face-saving 209 thus giving a first innings lead of 77 runs to the hosts. However, Pandya shined with the ball also and removed South African openers Aiden Markram (34) and Dean Elgar (25) as the Proteas ended second day’s play on 65/2, effectively 142.