On the second last ball of the 78th over of India’s first innings, Rahul smashed Keshav Maharaj for a boundary in the point region to complete his seventh ton in red-ball cricket.
Indian openers to hit Test Hundred in South Africa:
- 2007 – Wasim Jaffer, Cape Town
- 2021 – KL Rahul, Centurion
Further, Rahul also went past former Indian opener Virender Sehwag to smash more than four centuries outside Asia. The Karnataka stalwart is now only behind the legendary Sunil Gavaskar, who had scored 15 tons outside Asia.
Most Test hundreds by an Indian opener outside Asia:
- 15 – Sunil Gavaskar (81 innings)
- 5 – KL Rahul (34 innings)
- 4 – Virender Sehwag (59 innings)
- 3 – Vinoo Mankad (19 innings)/ Ravi Shastri (19 innings)
Rahul is also the first Indian opener to hit centuries in Australia, England and South Africa – the third visiting opening batter overall.
Visiting openers with Test tons in Australia, England & South Africa:
- Saeed Anwar – Pakistan
- Chris Gayle – West Indies
- KL Rahul – India
Meanwhile, at the close of play, India were in a commanding position with 272 runs on the board for the loss of three wickets. Rahul and Ajinkya Rahane remained unbeaten on 122 and 40, respectively.
For South Africa, fast bowler Lungi Ngidi was the only wicket-taker with all three scalps in his pocket.
Here is how Twitter reacted:
— Wasim Jaffer (@WasimJaffer14) December 26, 2021
— parthiv patel (@parthiv9) December 26, 2021
A KLassy 100! I am so glad we got to see KL Rahul inserted back into the Indian Test team this year. He’s played some great red ball cricket. A very versatile player. A well made century that is! #SAvIND
— Chloe-Amanda Bailey (@ChloeAmandaB) December 26, 2021
— Harbhajan Turbanator (@harbhajan_singh) December 26, 2021
This is a fantastic knock from @klrahul11 patience and application. See the number of balls he left. First test of an overseas series and to get a century is super special. Well played.
— Boria Majumdar (@BoriaMajumdar) December 26, 2021
There’s a KL Rahul who admonishes every ball in T20s .. And there’s a KL Rahul who’s so poised and patient in test cricket. Both a treat to watch. So much to admire about the centurion at Centurion today .. And the context of this hundred .. Taking a bow @klrahul11 #INDvsSA
— Jatin Sapru (@jatinsapru) December 26, 2021
— KolkataKnightRiders (@KKRiders) December 26, 2021
A brilliant day of cricket comes to an end with firmly in the driver’s seat, thanks to KL Rahul’s brilliant knock.
Drop a if you can’t wait to for Day !
— Royal Challengers Bangalore (@RCBTweets) December 26, 2021
India have batted with great resolve and skill. South Africa will bowl better as the series goes along but India have just given a glimpse of why they are such a force in test cricket
— Harsha Bhogle (@bhogleharsha) December 26, 2021
— Rajasthan Royals (@rajasthanroyals) December 26, 2021
— CricketTimes.com (@CricketTimesHQ) December 26, 2021
India’s best start on day 1 in South Africa was the 372/7 at Bloemfontein on 3 Nov 2001, when Tendulkar made 155 and Sehwag, on debut, hit 105.
But South Africa won the Test by 9 wkts on the 4th day!#IndvSA #IndvsSA#SAvInd #SAvsInd
— Mohandas Menon (@mohanstatsman) December 26, 2021
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