Watch: Kohli’s ‘voodoo act’ with bails results in Bumrah’s double strike | Cricket

What do you do when two batters are batting really and a wicket is nowhere in sight? You simply walk up to the stumps and flip the bails. Seems like poor a joke? Not exactly. It’s slowly but surely turning out to be a popular cricket superstition with instant results as a foolproof plan. Virat Kohli was the latest and maybe the first Indian cricketer to try that out. Kohli flipped the bails on Day 2 of the first Test against South Africa in Centurion and a couple of minutes later, India got the breakthrough.

Virat Kohli flipping the bails during India vs South Africa 1st Test

Dean Elgar and Tony de Zorzi were making the Supersport Spark pitch like a Rajkot belter in the post-lunch session on Wednesday. They were punishing anything loose on offer and scoring at more than five runs an over. India captain Rohit Sharma had to introduce a double change in the bowling attack. He brought in Jasprit Bumrah and Mohammed Siraj to replace Shardul Thakur and Prasidh Krishna.

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But Elgar and de Zorzi were positive against them too. Both Bumrah and Siraj were hit for boundaries. Elgar hit Siraj for another boundary on the last ball of the 28th over. It was at that very moment, Kohli decided to work his magic. He walked up to the stumps and flipped the bails in between overs.

Bumrah came on to bowl the next over and although de Zorzi hit him for boundary in the third ball, he was out off the last ball of that over. It was a length delivery from Bumrah that got big on the debutant and took the outside edge. The highest partnership of the match was broken. Kohli perhaps deserves as much credit as Bumrah for this dismissal. In Bumrah’s next over, Keegan Petersen dragged one back onto his stumps. India were once again back in the contest.

Watch: Virat Kohli flips bails like Stuart Broad, gets same result as Bumrah grabs two South African wickets

This is not the first time a bail flip resulted in a wicket in Test matches. It was perhaps made popular by Australia off-spinner Nathan Lyon. During the 2019 Ashes, Lyon bails bail flip resulted in the quick wickets of England batters Joe Root and Rory Burns.

Earlier this year, it was England’s Stuart Broad who flipped the bails during the fifth and final Ashes Test at The Oval and in the very next ball, Australia batter Marnus Lanbuschagne was dismissed.

Broad reacts to Kohli’s bail flip

Broad took note of Kohli’s act and shared a post on X (formerly Twitter).

Kohli’s bail-flip magic, however, did not last long as Elgar took control. The former South Africa captain, who is playing in his farewell series, slammed his 14th Test century. He made 115 not out in a South African total of 194 for three at tea after India were bowled out for 245.

KL Rahul scored 101 for India – his eighth Test century and his second in successive matches in Centurion.

South Africa added 145 runs for the loss of two wickets in 33 overs in an afternoon session extended to make up for overs lost in a rain-hit first day.

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