Ahmedabad, Apr.3 : South Africa's pace bowlers ripped through the much vaunted Indian batting line-up at the Motera Stadium on the city's outskirts on Thursday, bundling the hosts out for a paltry 76 runs in 20 overs in the second cricket Test between the two sides.
Led by Dale Steyn and Makaya Ntini, the Proteas sent the Indian innings spiralling into an abyss from the first few overs of the match.
Indian captain Anil Kumble, who passed a late fitness test, won the toss and elected to bat first on a pitch that had more than a tinge of green on it. With Sachin Tendulkar out with a groin injury, India went for the extra bowling option, picking Irfan Pathan in his place. R P Singh kept his spot, despite appearing to be short of both form and fitness in Chennai.
South Africa made no changes from the side that got them a comfortable draw in the Chennai Test.
Ntini drew first blood for his team by having opener Wasin Jaffer caught at slip by South African skipper Graeme Smith at his individual score of nine. Steyn and Ntinin picked up the next two wickets of Virender Sehwag for six and V.V.S. Laxman for three.
From there, it was a virtual parade of Indian batters walking back despondently to the dressing room.
Saurav Ganguly scored a duck, Rahul Dravid three. Wicketkeeper Mahendra Singh Dhoni scored 14, while Irfan Pathan scored an unbeaten 21. Kumble, R.P. Singh and S. Sreesanth scored ducks, while Harbhajan Singh scored one.
Steyn claimed five wickets and Ntini three, while Morne Morkel claimed the remaining two.
There have been four results in the eight Tests played at this venue, with South Africa losing their only game here in 1996. India thrashed Sri Lanka in their last outing at Motera, but this appeared to be a very different pitch from that one.
1 Virender Sehwag, 2 Wasim Jaffer, 3 Rahul Dravid, 4 VVS Laxman, 5 Sourav Ganguly, 6 Mahendra Singh Dhoni (wk), 7 Irfan Pathan, 8 Anil Kumble (captain), 9 Harbhajan Singh, 10 RP Singh, 11 Sreesanth outh Africa
1 Graeme Smith (captain) , 2 Neil McKenzie, 3 Hashim Amla, 4 Jacques Kallis, 5 Ashwell Prince, 6 AB de Villiers, 7 Mark Boucher (wk), 8 Morne Morkel, 9 Paul Harris, 10 Dale Steyn, 11 Makhaya Ntini.