IND vs SA | Faf du Plessis’ captaincy was unimpressive, feels VVS Laxman

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IND vs SA | Faf du Plessis’ captaincy was unimpressive, feels VVS Laxman

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SportsCafe Desk

10/11/2019

Indian cricket veteran VVS Laxman felt that the SA captain did not use his ace weapon Kagiso Rabada wisely on day one of the second Test, claiming it to be a tactical blunder. Rabada was the only bowler who tasted success in a day where the Proteas as a whole were below par in their performance.

India are well on their way to posting a mammoth first innings score after scoring 273-3 at the end of Day one. A Hundred from Agarwal and half centuries from Pujara and Kohli ensured that it was India’s day. South Africa managed to pick only three wickets all day, with all of them being taken by Kagiso Rabada. Thus Faf du Plessis not using his strike bowler at the right time was something that left VVS Laxman unimpressed and perplexed.

“Faf always comes across as a very intelligent and clever cricketer. Since Vizag Test, he has been disappointing as captain,” Laxman told official broadcaster Star Sports during post-day analysis.

Rabada had removed Rohit Sharma early, becoming the only successful Proteas bowler in the first session. But he was brought very late in the second session to bowl, something that made little sense to VVS Laxman.

“Your main bowler who did well and took wickets in the first session, you would want to give him the ball straightaway after Lunch. And I think he gets the ball just half an hour before Tea break,” he said

“You are allowing the new batsman to get his eyes in. Once quality players like Pujara, Mayank or Kohli get their eye in, it’s very difficult to get them out,” Laxman added.

Former Protea captain Graeme Smith also shared his views on such questionable captaincy. Having been a successful captain himself, Smith rightly felt that South Africa, by their own hands, gave the onus to India to be in a dominating position in this test match on day one itself.

“In general, I thought South Africa were quite negative today. Rabada I think bowled just three overs in Lunch to Tea session. All of us were pulling our hair out that the guy, who is in-form and getting something going, is not bowling enough,” Smith said.

“Their goal has been to control the run-rate. Yes, keep your bowlers like (Vernon) Philander and (Keshav) Maharaj but attack from the other end. You have to get 20 wickets in a Test match,” he further added.

In the end, Laxman touched on the importance of attacking a batsman when they are vulnerable early on in the innings and when they are not set.

“Ultimately he (Rabada) bowled 18 overs and those 18 overs should have been bowled in situations when the batsmen aren’t set. Even then, he takes wickets of Pujara and Agarwal. This shows there was a big tactical blunder from Faf du Plessis.” he signed off.

 

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