Vernon Philander’s career-best performance of 6-42 on day four at Newlands is our Play of the Day.
The momentum was with India after lunch on day four. After dismissing South Africa for 130, India went into the fourth innings needing only 208 runs for victory.
The Proteas needed a hero especially after Dale Steyn, the go-to man in so many similar situations over the years, could not bowl due to a heel injury.
Philander put his hand up and asked for the new ball and despite the pressure being on the Proteas at this point, he stuck to his game plan.
He thought that he had Murali Vijay on two separate occasions – India reviewed both ‘dismissals’ successfully but His persistence paid off when he eventually got the opener caught by AB de Villiers at slip.
FIRST TEST REPORT: Philander flays India
That was but the start of Philander’s match-winning run as he continued to take the ball away from the right-handed batsmen including Virat Kohli who misjudged a delivery that moved back into his body. This time Philander appealed and the umpire raised the finger.
Kohli reviewed, but the replays only confirmed that the India captain was ‘stone dead’ lbw and that was a massive turning point in the contest.
India continued to fight for a foothold with Ravi Ashwin and Bhuvneshwar Kumar putting on 49 runs for the eighth wicket.
South Africa needed someone to end the resistance and Philander returned to the attack, broke that partnership, and then ran through the tail to finish the innings with a six-wicket haul.
Philander finished the game with match figures of 9-75.
Photo: Chris Ricco/BackpagePix