South Africa shrugged off India like dust in the Boxing Day Test as they finished the game within three days winning by an innings and 32 runs in Centurion to take a 1-0 lead in the two-match series. Dean Elgar starred for South Africa with the bat scoring 185 in his penultimate Test match as he laid the foundation for South Africa's massive 408-run total along with Marco Jansen, who remained unbeaten on 84 as the hosts got a 163-run lead in the first innings, which was enough for the visitors who were shot out for 131 in the second innings.

The day started with Dean Elgar and Marco Jansen adding 104 more runs to pile on India's misery and take South Africa's lead beyond a hundred. Elgar was inching closer to a double hundred while Jansen a half-century. Shardul Thakur's lucky arm finally came to India's rescue, albeit a bit too late, as he got Elgar to get a faint nick through his gloves on the way to wicketkeeper Rahul to end the South African stand-in captain Elgar's marathon knock.

Gerald Coetzee had a bit of fun before R Ashwin sent him back and when it looked like the tailenders were getting a hold over India's bowling, Jasprit Bumrah with twin strikes ended the innings. South Africa had a lead of 163 runs and India's bowling would and should come under scrutiny as skipper Rohit Sharma admitted that it wasn't a 400 pitch.

When KL Rahul guided India to 245 somehow, it looked like a respectable score

after South African pacers were all over the visiting batters but it wasn't to be. How the Proteas batted really exposed India's pace attack as outside of Bumrah, no one looked penetrative enough.

As far as batting is concerned, it was another abject surrender from the batters. Skipper Rohit Sharma's horror run in the rainbow nation continued as he got out for a duck. Yashasvi Jaiswal couldn't get his gloves out of the way on time as he got out for just 5. Shubman Gill batted well for his 26 runs before he was dismissed by Jansen, who had his tails up after a majestic knock with the bat.

Shreyas Iyer, KL Rahul, R Ashwin and so on and so forth... It felt like the batters were coming in to bat just to go out. From 96-4, they were reduced to 121/9 before Virat Kohli, who had somehow kept India's hopes of making South Africa bad again alive, then had to hoard strike and started playing aggressively. However, the way it panned out for India, Kohli's well-timed lofted shot straight down the ground was caught by a diving Rabada. Jansen got the wicket, Rabada the catch. Kohli had to be trudged off the field as it was a 76 of the highest quality but he just had no support from the other end.

A middling year has ended on a worse note for India and the two-time WTC finalists will hope that the new year brings some respite as a loss in Cape Town might be harmful not just for Rohit Sharma as captain but Rahul Dravid as coach.
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