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5 worst defeats for Rahul Dravid in Tests

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Knocks of 94 and 55 from Graeme Smith took South Africa home in a run chase of 211 in the Cape Town Test in 2006
Knocks of 94 and 55 from Graeme Smith took South Africa home in a run chase of 211 in the Cape Town Test in 2006

Former India captain Rahul Dravid succeeded Sourav Ganguly in 2005 and continued to be the skipper of the side until late 2007 before resigning from the post. He had the honour of leading India in 25 Tests and 79 ODIs, a stint which included the 2007 World Cup in West Indies.

In the longest format, Dravid led India to series victories in West Indies (2006) and England (2007), while also being at the helm of India’s first Test win on South African soil, in 2006.

However, to look at the other side of the coin, there were also certain defeats which he endured – six in all, two of which were as stand-in captain – and Sportskeeda looks back on five of those which India could have well avoided with better application with the bat and ball.

#5 South Africa won by 5 wickets: Newlands, Cape Town 2006

Brief Scores: South Africa 373 (Smith 94, Amla 63; Kumble 4/117) and 211/5 (Smith 55, Prince 38*; Zaheer 4/62) beat India 414 (Jaffer 116, Ganguly 66; Pollock 4/75) and 169 (Dravid 47, Ganguly 46; Steyn 4/30) by 5 wickets

India had a rare opportunity to win a Test series in South Africa after they posted 414 in the third and final match, in 2006, with the series level at 1-1. Wasim Jaffer posted 116 with Sourav Ganguly, Sachin Tendulkar and Dinesh Karthik making 66, 64 and 63 respectively but four wickets each for Shaun Pollock and Paul Harris kept South Africa in the game.

The hosts' scorecard also featured multiple half-centuries with Graeme Smith top-scoring with 94 and Hashim Amla, Jacques Kallis and Mark Boucher chipping in with fifties of their own. That took South Africa to 373 with Anil Kumble bagging 4/117.

India's golden chance to put the opposition under pressure should have had them pile up big runs, but a collapse mid-way after stabilising knocks from Rahul Dravid and Ganguly ruined their chances. From 90/2, they were bowled out for 169 as Dale Steyn took 4/30, leaving South Africa 211 to chase.

Zaheer Khan bowled his heart out in an attempt to help India defend the score, but Smith stood strong for 55, with contributions from Pollock, Kallis and Ashwell Prince taking South Africa home with 5 wickets to spare.

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A childhood cricket enthusiast, my earliest cricket memory goes back to the 2003 World Cup, when I was 7. With a hobby of cricket commentary and writing from my early days, I earned an invitation for employment by aged only 20, and have also had the opportunity to interact with the great analyst Harsha Bhogle.
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