Couch Critic provides his betting tips for the second test match between India and South Africa which gets underway in Pune on Thursday 10th October
INDIA vs SOUTH AFRICA, 2nd Test Pune – Thursday, 10 October
SETTING THE SCENE
After the first day of the first test the Proteas looked like they were going to be absolutely slaughtered by Kohli’s India. In the end it did end up being a substantial loss, yet the South Africans showed plenty of fight and character in the first innings specifically as centuries by Elgar and de Kock saw the visitors limit the first inning lead to less than a hundred.
Despite their fight-back the regular issues against spin were still present for South Africa whilst there were also serious questions around the team selection as the three-spinner approach was never going to be the right way to go. Rohit Sharma has been under pressure to try and justify the continued faith in him finally making a success of red-ball cricket and he responded emphatically with back-to-back centuries.
Pune has proven kind to the batsmen yet the last time a test was held there (the only test to be hosted here to date) India were bundled out for 105 & 107 versus the Aussies. The spinning balls from Steve O’Keefe did the damage on that occasion. There has apparently been plenty of rain in the build-up to this 2019 return test so one doubts whether it could be equally dry and dismal this time around.
HOW I SEE IT PLAYING OUT
I’m expecting much of the same for this clash. There are too many Protea batsmen who are inexperienced and ill-equipped to withstanding the foreign conditions found in India. Many of my betting plays for the first test remain valid for this clash. Kohli had a very minor role to play considering the success of Sharma and Agarwal for the home team. The skipper will want to get involved in a big way in Pune.
Elgar was the shining light for the Proteas in the first innings of the first test but De Kock also followed through with a century of his own. He remains my favourite play in this market. I also believe captain Du Plessis to be the best player of spin in the team and with two bites of the cherry I reckon he notches up a fifty in one of his two efforts at the crease.
Ashwin and Jadeja must be in seventh heaven as they get to bowl at the Africans in conditions that are heavily stacked in their favour. For this test I expect Ashwin to really step up and keep tormenting the visitors to such a degree that he should be a runner for the Man of the Match award.
Best Bets with BETOLIMP:
Note, odds quoted are available at the time of writing but are subject to change