Nagpur Test: Proteas' coach refuses to be drawn into pitch controversy

Nagpur: Russell Domingo, the South African coach, refused to criticise the Nagpur wicket, even though the third Test has moved into the fourth innings on only the second day.

Russell Domingo
Russell Domingo

As many as 20 wickets fell on Day Two, with South Africa bowled out for 79 in the first innings. Ravichandran Ashwin and Imran Tahir picked up five-wicket hauls.

South Africa generally haven't criticised the turning pitches on this tour, with the exception of Dean Elgar at Mohali. Domingo followed the general pattern. "If you're winning the series, it is easy to criticise the pitch, but when you're behind in the series, it is difficult to criticise the pitch," he said.

Domingo also praised the Indian spinners' consistency and said the hosts deserve credit. "They have prepared wickets that suit their style of play, and their spinners have been really good. They have bowled outstandingly well and we won't criticise the pitch right now," he said.

Learning experience
Only three out of South Africa's top seven have played Test cricket in India before this tour. Thus, for this relatively inexperienced unit, India was always going to pose a big challenge. Domingo believes that this could be a learning curve for his team.

"I think we have a few less experienced players in our batting line-up this time. We've had guys like Alviro Petersen, Graeme Smith, Jacques Kallis, and now we have a few guys in our top seven who have never played a Test series in India before. So this will be a great learning experience for them," Domingo said. South Africa are chasing 310 to win the third Test and stay alive in the series before heading to Delhi for the tour finale.

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