Pune - Mayank Agarwal hit his second century in successive matches on the
opening day of the second Test against South Africa Thursday and said
his side should aim for a 500-run first innings.
SCORECARD | India v SA, 2nd Test - Day 1
The opener, who made a double century in India's opening Test win, scored 108 after the hosts elected to bat.
were 273-3 when bad light forced an early end to play, with skipper
Virat Kohli unbeaten on 63 and vice-captain Ajinkya Rahane on 18.
and Rahane put on 75 runs for the fourth wicket to thwart South
Africa's determined bowlers who kept them under pressure as the gloom
Agarwal, 28, said he was thrilled with his performance.
team is in a good position, winning the toss, batting first and with
one batsman short, it's a good thing to make runs... 450-500 would be
nice," Agarwal said.
"Try and get big runs in the first innings...
(that) could help us in case we don't want to bat again. It could
really put pressure on the South Africans."
Kohli, leading the Test side for the 50th time, reached his half-century with a boundary off fast bowler Vernon Philander.
Agarwal took the lead role despite being hit on the helmet from a
bouncer by debutant paceman Anrich Nortje. He went on to hit Nortje for
three glorious off drives in one over before lunch.
right-handed batsman put on 138 runs for the second wicket with
Cheteshwar Pujara, who made 58, to steady the innings after the fall of
Rohit Sharma early in the day.
He was eventually caught in the
slips by South African captain Faf du Plessis - one of fast bowler
Kagiso Rabada's three wickets for the day.
"There were periods
where I was getting boundaries very easily, there were periods where
they bowled very good line and lengths and were testing the bouncer as
well," said Agarwal, who is playing his sixth Test since making his
debut last year.
Rabada also claimed Sharma, who edged the ball into the gloves of wicketkeeper Quinton de Kock for 14 in the 10th over.
was a disappointment for Sharma, who hit twin centuries in his first
run as Test opener in Visakhapatnam where India took a 1-0 lead in the
Rabada struck again to get Pujara, caught
again by du Plessis, just before tea. Pujara, who was dropped by Temba
Bavuma before he scored, hit a six and nine fours.
Rabada returned figures of 3-48 in 18.1 overs.
Victory for India in the series will see them beat the record of 10 straight home series wins they share with Australia.