Cape Town - The Proteas secured a momentous series victory over the World No 1 ranked Test side India on Thursday.
There were some memorable individual performances that inspired this marvellous come-from-behind performance.
IOL Sport cricket correspondent Zaahier Adams provides his ratings card.
9.5 - Dean Elgar (235 runs, average 47, 50s: 2, HS: 96*)
South Africa’s captain would literally land up in hospital before giving an inch away to the Indians. He took countless blows to the body during this series, but never blinked once. His 96 not out at the Wanderers to level the series will be remembered as one of the finest innings by a South African captain. The way he managed to drag his team from the doldrums of the series opening defeat at Centurion has been nothing short of sensational.
9 – Keegan Petersen (276 runs, average 46, 50s: 3, HS: 82)
The official Player of the Series, Petersen grew in leaps and bounds during this past series. After shaky start in the first Test at Centurion, he struck three half-centuries in his four remaining innings that all played a massive part in the turnaround of South Africa’s fortunes. Always looked classy and composed whenever he was at the crease against one of the most skilful seam attacks in the world.
9 – Marco Jansen (19 wickets, average 16.47, BB: 4/31)
The undoubted find for South Africa during this series. Although still only 21 years old, and very much still a rough diamond, Jansen showed that he has the potential to become a “superstar” – according to his coach Mark Boucher – by extracting significant bounce through his height while also having the ability to swing the ball both ways at good pace. His battles with Jasprit Bumrah also showed that the fire burns within him to be a success at the highest level.
8 - Kagiso Rabada (20 wickets, average 19.05, BB: 4/42)
South Africa’s talisman required the proverbial “kick up the backside” before he awoke from his slumber in the second Test. It was provided to Rabada by his captain at the Wanderers and suddenly the old “KG” was back snorting fire. In this frame of mind, Rabada is among the very best in the world and for the remainder of the series he was certainly right on the money.
8 – Temba Bavuma (221 runs, average 73.66, 50s: 2, HS: 52)
The second Test century still eludes South Africa’s vice-captain, but his value to this team remains immense. Throughout the series Bavuma played innings of significant value, highlighted by the fact that he was at the crease when both successful chases were completed.
8 – Lungi Ngidi (15 wickets, average: 15, BB: 6/71)
After the troubles endured through injury and illness in 2021, Ngidi begun the series magnificently with a six-wicket haul at his home ground in the first Test. He bowled splendidly without luck at the Wanderers and then made a few crucial breakthroughs at Newlands to close out the series.
6 – Rassie van der Dussen (117 runs, average: 23.40, HS: 41*)
It was testing series for South Africa’s No 4 with his technique being worked over by the Indian seamers. Van der Dussen, though, is a tough nut and stood up in both successful fourth innings chases with crucial scores of 40 and 41 not out.
6 – Kyle Verreynne (21 runs, average 10.50, HS: 21, Catches: 14)
Although short of runs in the series, it was always going to be hard coming into the series midway through the series after Quinton de Kock sensationally announced his retirement after the first Test. However, Verreynne was a class act behind the stumps and made sure everything that came his way was caught.
4.5 – Duanne Olivier (5 wickets, average 39.0, BB: 3/64)
An underwhelming return to Test cricket for “The Enforcer” after his Kolpak stint. Olivier was down on pace – operating in the low 130s – and lacked his usual zip. The best return was on the opening morning at the Wanderers. Basically, kept the seat warm for Anrich Nortje’s expected return from injury.
4 – Keshav Maharaj (1 wicket, average 119, BB: 1/47, Runs: 66, HS: 25)
Although it was perplexing as to why South Africa’s spinner was included in the line-up, especially on the Highveld when the conditions were clearly suited for the seamers, Maharaj adds a great deal of unseen value in the changeroom. Equally, his contributions as a nightwatchman were invaluable in denting the Indian attack.
2 – Aiden Markram (76 runs, average 12.66, HS: 31)
Markram faces an uncertain future in the Test arena after being exposed by Mohammed Shami. It could be while before we see Markram in white clothes again.
1 – Wiaan Mulder (13 runs, average 6.50, Wickets: 0)
Dropped after the first Test at Centurion and has now been overtaken by Jansen as the No 1 all-rounder in the Test side.
* Quinton de Kock does not get a rating after he retired from Test cricket after the series opener at SuperSport Park.