South Africa-India Test to resume despite pitch concerns


The third and final Test between South Africa and India will continue on day four despite play ending early on Friday due to concerns over the safety of the Wanderers pitch.

Umpires Ian Gould and Aleem Dar, having already consulted each other and batsmen several times, brought the players off 19 minutes before the scheduled end of the third day after Proteas opener Dean Elgar was struck on the helmet by a Jasprit Bumrah bouncer.

Batsmen from both sides have struggled to contend against an exaggerated pitch, which has seen the quicks benefit from variable bounce, swing and sharp movement off the seam.

However, both India and South Africa expressed a desire to see out the rest of the match, with India batsman Ajinkya Rahane denying the pitch was dangerous and stating conditions were the same for both sides.

ICC confirmed in a statement: "The on-field umpires, in consultation with the match referee, and after speaking with both the captains and groundsmen, have decided that the Johannesburg Test will resume on time on Saturday.

"The on-field umpires will continue to monitor the pitch, and consult the match referee should the pitch deteriorate further. The welfare of the players is paramount and two of the most experienced match officials are in charge of the game and will take appropriate decisions.

"Play on Friday was suspended shortly before scheduled close because the on-field umpires wanted to consult the match referee regarding the condition of the pitch."

India, attempting to avoid a 3-0 series whitewash, were on top when stumps was called with South Africa 17-1 in the second innings and needing a further 224 to win.