Visakhapatnam, Oct 3 : South Africa were struggling at 39/3 at stumps after Rohit and Mayank's heroics put India in a commanding position on the second day of the first Test here at ACA-VDCA Cricket Stadium on Thursday.
Opener Dean Elgar (27 not out) and Temba Bavuma (2) were at the crease as the Proteas still trailing by 463 runs after the end of Day two.
Earlier, India skipper Virat Kohli declared the innings at 502/7 after the blistering knocks by Mayank Agarwal's (215) maiden double ton and Rohit Sharma's 176.
Starting the Day two on 202 for no loss, Rohit Sharma led the charge for India and continued to grind South Africa bowlers with his aggressive batting while Mayank Agarwal was happy to play second fiddle.
In the meantime, Rohit Sharma and Mayank Agarwal became only the 3rd Indian pair to add 300 plus for the first wicket and Rohit was very much close his maiden Test double hundred.
In the 82nd over of the Indian innings, Rohit decided to target Keshav Maharaj and hit a six and four in two consecutive balls. However at the very next ball, Rohit was beaten by the turn and out stumped for 176, one short of his personal Test best.
After Rohit's wicket, Mayank was determined to bat long even as Cheteshwar Pujara (6), Virat Kohli (20) and Ajinkya Rahane (8) fell cheaply. He kept on playing his shots and became the 23rd Indian batsman to hit a double hundred in Test cricket .
In order to score more quickly, Agarwal's marathon 215-run knock came to an end in the bowling of Dean Elgar. After that, it was Ravindra Jadeja and Hanuma Vihari's turn to bat ahead. But Vihari fell cheaply and it was left to comeback man Wriddhiman Saha who made 21 off 16 before getting out.
Eventually,Virat declared the innings as India wanted to bowl at least 20 overs to South Africa. South Africa didn't start well as Ashwin struck in his 3rd over to get rid of the dangerous Aiden Markram.
The Indian spin duo of Ashwin and Jadeja troubled the visitors in the third session as Ashwin finished with two wickets while Jadeja took one wicket. (UNI)