Batting legend Sunil Gavaskar has come down hard over Team India’s tactics on Day 4 of the recently concluded third Test against South Africa at Newlands in Cape Town. The Proteas chased down the target of 212 runs successfully to register the victory and clinch the three-match series 2-1.
Gavaskar analysed India’s embarrassing loss, questioning Virat Kohli‘s tactics, especially after the lunch on the fourth day. Notably, the hosts needed a further 41 runs to win when both sides headed for lunch.
However, the Proteas scored the remaining runs in just 8.3 overs in the second session and won the contest by seven wickets. Gavaskar was surprised by the visitors’ strategy of not using Jasprit Bumrah, Mohammed Shami, or Shardul Thakur in the afternoon session.
“It was a mystery to me why Shardul Thakur and Jasprit Bumrah did not bowl after lunch. It was almost as if India had decided that they are not going to win this,” Gavaskar told broadcasters after the match.
The former India skipper also pointed out the over-defensive approach during Ravichandran Ashwin‘s over, stating the tourists provided easy singles to South African batters.
“The field placements there were for Ashwin (was not right)… There were singles available easily. Five fielders were in the deep. Let the batters take a chance that is your only opportunity to get them out,” added the 72-year-old.
Gavaskar further heaped praises on South African batters for the brilliant effort on a bowler’s friendly track at Newlands.
“The pitches weren’t the best for batting, but the application shown by the South Africans in Johannesburg, the application shown by them in this Test as well has been praiseworthy. That showed the character of the team,” asserted Gavaskar.