India entered the Wanderers Stadium in Johannesburg to save whatever integrity was left of them after suffering a 2-0 loss in the first two Tests against South Africa. In a bid to prevent the Proteas from whitewashing Team India, the men in blue won the toss and chose to bat on a rather spicy pitch, ending up all-out with a score of 187. In the process, India broke 5 illustrious records which shall be discussed below.
1. Lowest average ever by Indian batsmen in Test series
Indian openers achieved a new low when they stepped into the third test at the Wanderers, also known as ‘Bullring’ for it’s hostile crowd and wicket conditions. Indian openers – Murali Vijay, KL Rahul, and Shikhar Dhawan – collectively averaged 12.30 in this Test series against South Africa, resulting in the lowest ever batting averaged by Indian openers in any Test series of 3 or more matches.
Shikhar Dhawan – 32 runs @ 16.00 | Murali Vijay – 77 runs @15.40 | KL Rahul – 14 runs @ 4.66.
2. Longest run-less streak by an Indian top-order batsman in a Test innings in 20 years
Cheteshwar Pujara took 54 balls to score his first run against South Africa in India’s first innings of the 3rd Test at Wanderers. This is the longest scoreless streak by an Indian top order batsman in a Test innings in the last two decades. Previous highest streak that went scoreless was Sachin Tendulkar’s record of 45 balls, which had come against Zimbabwe in 2002.
3. Virat Kohli, second Asian captain to score 200+ runs in a Test series in South Africa
Indian skipper Virat Kohli scored 54 runs before getting out to Lungi Ngidi. Resultantly, Kohli had accumulated more than 200 runs, taking his earlier runs from Cape Town and Centurion into account. Achieving the feat, Virat Kohli became only the second captain in all of Asia, to amass more than 200 runs in a Test series in South Africa.
The first Asian captain to have achieved the feat was none other than Sachin Tendulkar, who had entered the record book in 1996.
4. Most 50+ scores by Indian captains in International Cricket
Virat Kohli entered the record list and landed among the greatest Indian captains of all time, for scoring 42 fifty-plus (50+) scores. The first Indian captain in the list is former Indian captain MS Dhoni, with 82 fifty-plus scores, followed by Mohammed Azharuddin and Sourav Ganguly, who have scored fifty-plus runs in 59 different instances.
Virat Kohli was third with 42 fifty-plus scores and the Indian team ‘Wall’ Rahul Dravid was fourth on the list with 41 fifty-plus scores. It goes without saying that Kohli has overtaken Rahul Dravid in the feat, with his eyes on the prize.
5. Most 50+ run partnerships by Indian pairs in Tests in South Africa
Although the Indian batsmen struggled heavily to score even a little bit of runs, they managed to record the highest number of 50+ run partnerships. Interestingly, it was captain Virat Kohli and Cheteshwar Pujara who entered the record list with three 50+ stands in Tests in South Africa.
The top-batting order pair could not overtake the best record with this feat but were very well able to level it. Virat Kohli and Pujara’s feat is shared by former Indian openers – Rahul Dravid and Sourav Ganguly – who have the same number of 50+ stands in South Africa Tests.