Elgar looking to bow out on top

January 2, 2024 6:24 am

South Africa's Dean Elgar [Source: Reuters]

Dean Elgar will looking to conclude his international career on another high as he unexpectedly captains South Africa in the second and last test against India, which starts at Newlands.

Just days before the first test in Pretoria, the 36-year-old Elgar announced he would retire from international cricket after the conclusion of the brief series against the top ranked Indians.

After a man-of-the-match performance in the first test, when his knock of 185 laid the platform for South Africa’s innings and 32 run victory, he will be hoping to sign off with another win.

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Although there were significant contributions from the bowlers, South Africa’s emphatic victory at Centurion had much to do with Elgar’s dogged determination at the crease.

It helped ensure that the hosts cannot lose the brief series to India, who had targeted this trip, dubbed the ‘final frontier, to win a series in South Africa for a first time.

Injury to Temba Bavuma also thrust Elgar back into the captain’s role that was taken away from him last February.

South Africa’s young side can expect something of a backlash in conditions that will be a little less intimidating than in Pretoria and where a chastised Indian side have promised a better performance. read more

Captain Rohit Sharma fended off home criticism by pointing out previous success away from home. “We might have put in this performance here, but don’t forget what we did in Australia and England,” he said.

India will likely have allrounder Ravindra Jadeja returning after upper back spasms kept him out of the first test and could make other changes among their under performing seamers.

South Africa are unbeaten in six previous tests at Newlands against India but face a tough examination despite being in a buoyant mood after their success in the Boxing Day test.