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India Vs SA: Opener Rahul Rises To The Occasion And Scores Sixth Century On Foreign Shores

South Africa was far from hostile on the first day of the first Test against India at the Centurion, a venue where the home team has gone down only twice in 26 matches; in fact South Africa has won 21 Tests. But the inability of fast bowlers Kagiso Rabada, Lungi Ngidi, Wiaan Mulder and debutant Marco Jansen ought not to take away anything from KL Rahul’s superb century. It can be said that the doughty and elegant opener has made it a habit of achieving the magic three figure on foreign soil, six times so far; 110 against Australia at Sydney in 2015, 108 against Sri Lanka at Colombo in August 2015, 158 against the West Indies at Kingston in July 2016, 149 against England at The Oval in September 2018, 129 against England at Lord’s in August 2021 and 123 against South Africa at the Centurion in December 2021. His only home century in 81 Test match innings is the 199 against England at the Chepauk in December 2016. His seven centuries, including the overseas have all been as an opener. The trick of the trade, as exhibited by Rahul, is to demonstrate judgment to know where his off stump is, leave the ball and see it go to the wicket keeper. As an opener Rahul who plays with calm demeanour, has been par excellence.