Aakash Chopra has made his predictions for the third day of the second Test between India and South Africa.
Team India reached a score of 85/2 by Stumps on Day 2 of the Johannesburg Test, with Cheteshwar Pujara and Ajinkya Rahane at the crease. They lead South Africa by 58 runs and have eight second-innings wickets in hand.
In a video shared on his YouTube channel, Aakash Chopra predicted that the Proteas will need to chase a target of more than 200 runs to draw level in the three-match series. He said:
"I feel India will take a lead of 200 runs. We might not reach too far but we should go beyond 200, that is what I believe."
The former India cricketer expects Kagiso Rabada to be at his wicket-taking best in the visitors' second innings. Chopra observed:
"Rabada will pick up three wickets. He can take more as well, he has got something going for him. I feel this time he will take 2-3 wickets quickly."
Rabada is yet to pick up a wicket in India's second innings. South Africa's most experienced bowler has snared ten wickets in the series thus far, including three scalps in India's first innings at the Wanderers.
"Ashwin, Shardul and Vihari will score more than 50 runs" - Aakash Chopra
"Ashwin, Shardul and Vihari - all of them together - will score more than 50 runs. They will have to do that as well if you want to reach till 200 because after that the expectations of runs will reduce slightly."
The reputed commentator concluded by saying that the Indian bowlers will get rid of the South African top order before Stumps on Day 3. Chopra elaborated:
"I feel before the end of the day's play, India will pick up three or more wickets. I mean 11 wickets on the first day, 11 wickets on the second day, it is possible 11 or 12 wickets might fall on the third day as well. This is a Test match of a maximum of three-and-a-half days, this is not going to the fifth day."
The Johannesburg Test has certainly moved at a fast pace, with the pitch providing a lot of assistance to the seam bowlers. The match could even end on the third day if either team runs through the opposition lineup.
Poll : Will India take a lead of 200+ runs?