Former South Africa pacer Morne Morkel has lauded the Virat Kohli-led Indian team as the “best in the world” after they defeated hosts South Africa in Centurion Test by 113 runs to take a 1-0 lead in the three-match series.
India not only won their maiden Test at the venue, but also became the first Asian team clinch a victory at the SuperSport Park, where South Africa had won seven matches on the trot. India started the year by breaching Australia’s fortress in Brisbane and ended with another brilliant victory in South Africa’s.
Chasing a stiff 305 for the win, South Africa were wrapped by India for 191, with the pace trio of Jasprit Bumrah, Mohammed Shami and Mohammed Siraj scalping eight wickets between them, while the remaining two were bagged in quick succession by off-spinner R Ashwin. Indian opener KL Rahul was named the Player of the Match for his brilliant century in the first innings that helped India to 327.
“Well Done. They (Team India) are by far the best team in the world today. In a short time now, you deserve it, they’ve worked long and hard to support their team that can go an compete away from home,” Morkel said during the post-match show on Star Sports.
“The clear game plan that the bowlers can take 20 wickets; so enjoy this moment. I think it’s a special feat to be a part of. For me, India are definitely leading the way,” he added.
India and South Africa will next meet in Johannesburg for the second rubber, which gets underway from January 3. India have never won a series in this part of the world, having lost six of the seven times since 1992, while one series ended in a draw.