Bhuvneshwar's ouster from the team is foolhardy

"We are going to look at anything possible to take them out of their comfort zones".

Amla and De Villiers had scored 51 for the third wicket; South Africa's third successive half-century partnership of the day.

He never looked it while at the wicket, but Markram acknowledged that he had felt the nerves before going out to bat on his homer patch.

South Africa were 182 for two wickets at tea after winning the toss and batting on an easy-paced pitch.

South African skipper Faf du Plessis, who will be playing on his home ground, however expressed his surprise at the presence of brown grass on the pitch in the pre-match press conference.

"More than having to make changes from the 2013-14 tour it was a reality check in terms of not being able to win a Test match for the country on day five when all things were actually set up for a spinner".

South Africa were comfortably placed at 246/3 at one stage.

The entire nation was left disappointed over Team India's shameful loss in the opening test against South Africa and was expecting some desirable changes in the playing XI.

It is learnt that the conditions in Centurion may not aid swing bowling and Ishant Sharma could be considered in place of Bhuvneshwar Kumar, despite his six-wicket match haul and a gritty 25 in the first Test. Seamer Bhuvneshwar was surprisingly replaced by Ishant, while opener Rahul was selected in place of Shikhar Dhawan and wicketkeeper Saha, who has a niggle, was replaced by Patel.

Jasprit Bumrah, in his second Test, was elevated to new-ball bowler and failed to impress, bleeding 18 runs in his second spell of two overs. In the end, it was the batting of Indian all-rounders Ravichandran Ashwin, Hardik Pandya and Bhuvnesh Kumar who helped India gain the upper hand in a couple of sessions during the game.

That meant little, though, after Hardik Pandya swooped, turned and threw down the stumps at the non-striker's end to run out Amla and turn the day around.

If the first run out was magic from Pandya the second was madness by the Proteas as Vernon Philander (0) set off for a run as the ball looped just beyond short leg, it ended with him at the same end as Du Plessis and on his at back to the changerooms.

In the last session though, India came alive. You can analyse all the lines and lengths bowled by the bowlers, you can look at the discipline shown by the batsmen, and then one piece of exceptional awareness in the field creates a run-out, there is some panic, and you now have your best chance to win a Test in South Africa. De Villiers had to leave for 20, and the Indians were jubilant.

Du Plessis held his team together until stumps and was 24 not out.

There have been murmurings that South Africa may even select a fifth seamer and leave spinner Keshav Maharaj on the sidelines, with Duanne Olivier, Andile Phehlukwayo and uncapped Lungi Ngidi in the squad to offer that option.

Vanessa Coleman