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In what would be Virat Kohli's last home game this season before he heads out to prepare for the daunting South African tour, he has another record to rewrite at Delhi. A victory on his home ground in Delhi would equal Australia's record of 9 successive Test series wins. Incidentally, the journey towards supremacy in the longest format began against Sri Lanka in 2015, Kohli's first series win on foreign soil.
The 8th win was again in the Island nation earlier this year and now at Delhi, presents himself with a potential landmark achievement to carry along to South Africa which would act as an added boost going forward.
The nature of the pitches in the series has fuelled the pre-match talking points in both games thus far. It's an open secret that the Indian think-tank has asked for more grass on the pitches. While we saw a lot of it at Kolkata, the Nagpur pitch flattered to deceive. And while Ishant Sharma made use of the Day 1 green tinge, none of the other seam bowlers could extract anything out of it. Being a local lad and fresh out of playing for his state side in the Ranji Trophy, Ishant will be itching to once again lead the attack in Bhuvneshwar Kumar's absence.
With Daljit Singh, BCCI's chief curator overseeing the pitch preparations, the team might just get what they desired. "There's ample grass on the wicket, it's December and there will definitely be some help for the fast bowlers," added Daljit. The chills of December plus the fact that Kotla pitches contain an overriding amount of black soil will aid Ishant Sharma, Mohammed Shami and Umesh Yadav as the moisture would remain intact. While the track is expected to be lively, any comparison to the spiciness seen at Eden Gardens is highly unlikely.
Murali Vijay's ton would most likely cement his place in the playing XI. The toss-up between KL Rahul and the returning Shikhar Dhawan for a spot in the team would be interesting to see. While KL Rahul's recent Test match form should warrant him a place, any decision taken by the management should be respected as it would be in the best interests of the team.
While Virat gets much needed rest after this series, the performances of the likes of Yuzvendra Chahal and Kedar Jadhav in the limited overs leg would expectedly be on his mind as India play 9 limited over matches in South Africa.
But first, catch all the action of the 3rd Test between India and Sri Lanka on Saturday, 2nd December from Feroz Shah Kotla in Delhi.