Mahendra Singh Dhoni won the toss in the 2nd Test match between host South Africa and India in Durban and elected to bat. Dhoni says India have a lot of overseas Tests lined up, and if they are to play only one spinner, they will have to take a call on who to play depending on conditions. So Ashwin’s place as the lead spinner in overseas Tests is no longer guaranteed. That last day at Wanderers has gone against him, and he is out on a pitch that is expected to help spinners much more than Johannesburg did.
The team news sprung a few surprises, with R. Ashwin, India’s lead spinner for quite some time now has been dropped from the side after a rather dismal display in the 1st Test in which he was responsible for no wickets. He has been replaced by whom many call a bowling all-rounder Sir Ravindra Jadeja, what comes as a further shock is, Durban has been touted as a spinner friendly track , and with Pragyan Ojha also in the ranks, picking Jadeja ahead of Ojha may not be a rewarding gamble for Dhoni. South Africa also dropped spinner Imran Tahir for left arm spinner Robin Petersen.
The team news are as follows:
India XI: M. Vijay, S. Dhawan, V. Kohli, C. Pujara, R. Sharma, A. Rahane, M.S. Dhoni, Ravindra Jadeja, I. Sharma, M. Shami and Z. Khan.
South Africa XI: G. Smith, A. N. Petersen, H. M. Amla, J. H. Kallis, AB deVilliers, F du Plesis, J. P. Duminy, R. J. Petersen, V. D. Philander, D. Steyn and M. Morkel.