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1st Test – Proteas Give Australia a Taste of their Own Medicine on Day 2

fasNew Delhi, Friday, November 4 – The first Test match between South Africa and Australia seems to getting an interesting turn on the start of Day 2. Proteas wanted to kick off their tour of Australia on a strong note but that could not happen as their first innings got finished in 63.4 overs, totaling 242 runs.

The wicket of W.A.C.A. Ground in Perth caused real troubles to the travelers, who were eying to total enormous runs post South African skipper Faf du Plessis won the toss and decided to bat first. The invitation to bowl was well accepted by the hosts who showed way to the dressing room to Stephen Cook, Dean Elgar, Hashim Amla, Jean-Paul Duminy, Kagiso Rabada, Vernon Philander, Dale Steyn, and Keshav Maharaj in a short span of time, letting them unexpectedly suffer batting collapse.

If truth be told then only Temba Bavuma and Quinton de Kock were able to mark an impression on the minds of viewers by playing innings of 51 runs and 84 runs, respectively. Bavuma hit seven boundaries while the wicket-keeper of South Africa, Quinton de Kock, struck 11 fours along with a six. To a certain extent, a little bit constancy in performance was displayed by Faf du Plessis too as he scored 37 runs in 74 balls, letting the ball touch the boundary line for five times.

Three batsmen helped the team gain a little bit foothold that was imperative to not succumb easily to Australian bowlers. This wasn’t easy for the Proteas since the early jolt was received in the first over of the game as opening batsman Stephen Cook was dismissed by Starc on a zero. Marsh was quick in taking the catch. Hashim Amla was also out on a naught the moment Hazlewood was brought on the attack. His dismissal without a doubt brought his team under pressure at the early hours of play.

This wasn’t expected since South African side having potential to do well. However, in front of Australian bowlers, only a few were able to shine. Dean Elgar’s wicket went into the pocket of Hazlewood when he was batting at the score of 12. Jean-Paul Duminy lost his wicket to Siddle after totaling 11 runs, increasing pressure on the batsmen who are to arrive after him. Wicket of Vernon Philander was picked by Starc at a score of 10, which comprised a four. Steyn was dismissed at 4 runs, Rabada at 11 runs and Maharaj at 16 runs. Stress was built to a great extent from time to time, letting bowlers celebrate in joy as soon as wickets were taken.

The troubles for the visiting squad was reduced to some level after the middle-order managed to hit some shots and increase the pace of attaining runs. Mitchell Starc pocketed four wickets, Josh Hazlewood three wickets, Nathan Lyon two wickets, Peter Siddle one wicket and Mitchell Marsh no wicket. The guests wanted to let Australia feel same sort of pressure as they did but that wasn’t easy thanks to strong batting lineup and familiarity with pitch conditions at home. Australian team looked forward to earning grip in the opening Test and openers David Warner and Shaun Marsh helped them attain what was likely.

Warner was quick in getting 97 runs off just 100 balls. His innings was studded with 16 boundaries and a six. Steyn gave South Africa a much needed breakthrough and broke partnership between Warner and Marsh, who weaved 158 runs together. But yes, the bigger achievement of Proteas bowlers in problematic stage was to dismiss Usman Khawaja at 4 runs and Steven Smith on a zero. Shaun Marsh got his legs before wicket in an over of Philander. His innings of 63 runs off 148 balls (4 x 7). Mitchell Marsh was sent back to the dressing room before he could open his account.

Adam Voges lost his wicket to Rabada post contributing 27 runs. Those on crease at the present moment are   Mitchell Starc  and Peter Nevill. The two would like to help Aussies get some lead so that pressure can be kept on the rivals. Siddle, Lyon and Hazlewood are yet to bat. After 61 overs, 202 runs have been scored. They would eye building partnerships and South African bowlers look forward to remaining four wickets at the same time. Despite having a good start, the Australian batsmen could not get success in maintaining the same momentum. South Africa have great chance of sending the tail-ender batsmen back to pavilion before they play significant knocks. Even though they could not capitalize the decision of batting first but here is the chance to bounce back.

The objective for them would be bringing Australian innings to an end as early as possible and mount up considerable amount of runs when they come to bat for the second time. Mistakes made a day ago, resulting in batting collapse shall not be repeated otherwise Aussies will not leave any stone unturned to send them under the pump by performing up to the mark. As per the current scenario, an unimpressive lead by the hosts is predicted. Some partnerships by the openers and use of capabilities will help strategies and tactics come into picture. Australia went with five bowlers but for South Africa, job is done by Dale Steyn, Vernon Philander, Kagiso Rabada and Keshav Maharaj. If truth be told then timely wickets earned by these bowlers have helped Proteas stay in the game.

Before thinking about the Tests at Bellerive Oval in Hobart and Adelaide Oval in Adelaide, both squads are focusing on winning here in Perth. On one hand, challenging total in their second innings is eyed by South Africa, while Australia hope for letting the rivals have a taste of foreign conditions. It is interesting to notice what happens when all sessions ends today. Both sides are proficient to do well in the difficult times. It is apparent that the team that lands itself in trouble after failing to implement line of attack as planned before arriving on the crease will give chance to the opponents shine. What unfolds in the latter part will be a key thing to notice. Support of fans for the home squad is good as compared to South Africa. How it is utilized is yet to be observed. Audience strength is thought to stay good. It is true that players love to see people backing them while the game is on. Weather also plays important role along with pitch. Winning is important for both teams to rise and keep confidence up.

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