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South Africa playing their first series of the World Test Championship (WTC) 2023-25 cycle and kicked it off on a brilliant note beating the two-time finalists India by an innings and 32 runs in the Boxing Day Test in Centurion. The Proteas catapulted to the top of the points table with a 100 points percentage (PCT) as they earned all 12 points from the game. Dean Elgar, the stand-in captain for South Africa led from the front after Temba Bavuma's injury as he smashed 185 helping his side get to a 408-run total, which was enough for them to get India out twice within three days.

India, on the other hand, fell four spots down to fifth as their PCT went from 66.67 to 44.44. India are marginally ahead of Australia currently, however, things could change if the current world Test champions beat Pakistan in the ongoing Boxing Day Test in Melbourne.

India have now won just one Test in SENA (South Africa, England, New Zealand and Australia) countries in



the last two years, the Boxing Day Test in Centurion in 2021. Since then, they have gone on to lose three matches in South Africa and two in England, including this year's WTC final.

India's batting and bowling lacked depth and penetration as South Africa despite not fielding their best bowling attack had a foot on the visitors' throat probably for the entire duration. Apart from KL Rahul's century in the first innings, there was nothing much to India's joy. Yes, Virat Kohli played a superb knock, but it was more of how long he can avoid the inevitable rather than him playing a Ben Stokes-esque innings to help his team get a huge lead on the board for South Africa to chase as there was nothing to offer from the other batters.

South Africa are 1-0 ahead and India can't win the series in what was advertised as the final frontier. But can India at least draw the series in Cape Town, which hasn't been very lucky for them? Your guess is as good as ours...
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