South Africa pacer Kagiso Rabada still believes that his side can win the first Test against India despite being reduced to 94/4 in chase of a stiff target of 305 on the penultimate day at Centurion on Wednesday. (More Cricket News)
Rabada took four wickets for 42 runs to help his team bowl out India for 174 in 50.3 overs in their second innings, leaving the home side 305 runs to secure victory. South Africa still need 211 runs on the final day on Thursday to win the match with six wickets in hand.
“Definitely. we have just got to show belief. Strategize overnight and see how to approach this. Every sportsman has got to believe,” Rabada said when asked whether South Africa can still win the first Test.
He said skipper Dean Elgar, who was not out on 52 at stumps, would be key to the team’s cause on the final day. “Dean is doing his best for his team, his country and himself. He is leading from the front. He has done it countless times,” Rabada said of his captain.
About the possibility of rain on the final day on Thursday, he said, “Yeah, there have been chats on when it is going to rain or when it is not going to...It is a bit of an uncontrollable.” Rabada is in awe of Indian pacers who have swung the match in the visiting team's favour.
“They got some quality bowlers. (Mohammed) Shami and (Jasprit) Bumrah are very experienced and (Mohd) Siraj has been bowling well in the recent past,” he said. “They have a good attack, they got pace and they have got skills. They are showing why they are a good attack.”
Asked about debutant pace colleague Marco Jansen, who took four wickets in the Indian second innings, Rabada said, “He is a phenomenal talent. He is an awkward customer to face. There is swing, bounce and pace coming at you.
“In the (Indian) second innings, he justified his selection...he seems like he wants to learn. He is a hard worker. He is really keen on doing well for his team and himself,” added Rabada.
On the number of no-balls (17 in the match including six in the Indian second innings), the South African pacer said he would need to work on it before the next game.
“Look, it is not acceptable. It is something I have to work on. The no-balls are controllable and I need to work on it before the next test,” he added.