The third Test match between India and South Africa is evenly-poised as the tourists reached 49/1, a lead of 42 runs, in the second innings at the close of play on day two at the Wanderers, in Johannesburg, on Thursday.

Earlier, Hashim Amla top-scored in the SA inning with 61 off 121 balls with seven fours but, if you consider that the other five specialist batsmen in the South African top order made 27 runs between them, you would have been left wondering where the home side would have been without him.

He first kept SA in the game when there was the real possibility that they would be well behind on the first innings and then guided them through a lead of 7 runs in the first innings.

India, who re-arranged their top order with Parthiv Patel opening the batting, got through to the close on 49 for the loss of just one wicket.

It leaves the final Test match well-balanced, with 11 wickets having fallen on day one and 10 on day two, the contest is surely moving to an early conclusion.

Nightwatchman Kagiso Rabada also hung around for almost the entire morning session to help Amla put on 64 for the third wicket, and then Vernon Philander provided the most free-flowing batting of the day in adding 44 for the seventh wicket with Amla in only 12 overs.

Batting on this surface has remained an absolute lottery and the Indian pace attack generally took full advantage of the opportunity with Jasprit Bumrah returning career-best figures of 5/54 and both Buvneshwar Kumar and Ishant Sharma providing excellent supporting roles.