South Africa’s batting hero in the Test series win over India, Keegan Petersen has stated that the achievement of having defeated a strong Indian side is yet to sink in. The 28-year-old described the Indian bowling attack in the series as the most challenging he has faced in his career so far.
Petersen was the Player of the Series with 276 runs, including three half-centuries, as South Africa recovered from a 0-1 deficit to register a 2-1 victory. He was also the Player of the Match in Cape Town for his scores of 72 and 82.
Reflecting on the memorable triumph, the right-handed batter with a compact technique was quoted as saying by Cricket South Africa’s (CSA) official website:
"It hasn't completely sunk in yet. I still can't explain how it feels completely despite it being two days already. Myself, my family and everyone close to us are still trying to get over it somehow. It was a challenging series against one of the best bowling attacks in the world."
Petersen admitted that facing the high-class Indian bowling was a massive challenge. He added:
"It was by far the most challenging bowling I have come across in my career, whether it's been in first-class cricket or any form of cricket. It hasn't been an easy introduction for me to international cricket, but I honestly wouldn't have it any other way. My journey's unique and it's my story to tell as well.”
The aggressive batter made his Test debut against West Indies at Gros Islet in June 2021, managing only 19 in South Africa’s innings win. In the Centurion Test against India as well, he was dismissed for low scores. However, Petersen lifted himself and registered three half-centuries in his next four innings.
“We wouldn't want anyone else to lead us” - Keegan Petersen lauds Dean Elgar
Apart from Petersen, South African captain Dean Elgar was the standout performer for the hosts with the bat. He scored defiant 77 in Centurion before leading the team to victory with an unbeaten 96 in Johannesburg.
Hailing his captain, the batter with famous initials ‘KP’ said:
"Deano as our captain, he's going to, he has and he is going to achieve great things as well as a captain. He's a brilliant leader and we wouldn't want anyone else to lead us. The achievement for us as a squad, we know the chips were down and the odds were against us especially after the first game where we were beaten. It wasn't a good scenario, but we had a couple of strong chats after the game looking at ways to bounce back.”
With the Test series in the bag, South Africa will now shift focus to the three-match ODI series, which begins in Paarl on Wednesday, January 19.