Pune 10 Oct 2019: Opener Mayank Agarwal once again proved his mettle with a century against the struggling South Africa on the opening day of the second test at Maharashtra Cricket Association Stadium in Pune on Thursday.
Later, two half-centuries, one from Cheteshwar Pujara and other from none-other-than Indian captain Virat Kohli helped India to reach at a commanding position of 273 for three when the play was stopped in the 86th over due to bad light.
The 28-year-old's gorgeous form continued as he looked in total control for his 108 off 195 balls, after having made double century in the series opener in Vishakhapatnam last week. The first day of the second match also appeared to be panning out to India’s advantage similar to the way the first Test.
After losing Rohi Sharma (14) in the first hour, both Pujara and Mayank slowly stitched together a second wicket partnership. Along with Cheteshwar Pujara (58), Mayank Agarwal added 138 runs for the second wicket with good flow.
In the final session, skipper Virat Kohli (63 batting off 105 balls) was in his element, hitting yet another Test half-century and adding 75 runs for the unbroken fourth wicket partnership with Ajinkya Rahane (18 batting off 70 balls). Kohli had 10 fours to his credit.
The highlight of the day however was Agarwal's patient approach against both pace and spin. His stylish knock comprised 16 fours and two sixes.
Among South African pacers, Kagiso Rabada (3/48) was the only one who could find rhythm on Pune’s fast pitch. Rabada's beautiful delivery that pitched on length helped South Africa an earlier advantage by trapping Rohit through a catch to the wicket keeper Quinton de Kock.
Later, he scalped Pujara who was caught at first slip. Finally, Mayank also lost his wicket to Kagiso Rabada’s sharp delivery allowing a catch to Faf du Plessis.