GROS ISLET (St Lucia): Former captain Quinton de Kock pushed South Africa’s lead past 100 against West Indies in the first Test on Friday.
De Kock was 44 not out at lunch on the second day and South Africa’s main hope of a sizeable first-innings advantage as they ended the session on 205-5.
South Africa blew West Indies out for 97 on the first day and reached 128-4 at stumps. The Proteas continued to forge ahead on day two. Rassie van der Dussen made 46 to build on Aiden Markram’s 60 from day one.
West Indies were fighting to stay in the game but had one positive in the performance of 19-year-old fast bowler Jayden Seales, who had figures of 3-50 in his debut Test.
Seales removed Keegan Petersen (19), Markram, and Kyle Verreynne (6) late on the first day, all caught behind the wicket, validating his selection in place of the injured Shannon Gabriel.
But after a 14-wicket opening day at the Darren Sammy Stadium, West Indies broke through only once in the first session on Friday when Jason Holder pitched up to Van der Dussen and produced an edge to Shai Hope at gully.
De Kock, in his first test since giving up the captaincy and taking a break for mental health reasons, steadied his team with five fours and a 43-run stand with Wiaan Mulder, who was 21 not out.
Post-lunch on Thursday, seamer Lungi Ngidi showed all his guile to take five wickets for 19 runs, mowing through the lower half of the West Indies batting order.
Ngidi claimed his second five-wicket bag in Tests and his first since his debut against India in 2018 as South Africa ended the West Indies’ first innings in just 40.5 overs after the home side had chosen to bat on winning the toss.
Seamer Anrich Nortje had pushed the West Indies on the back foot with three of the four wickets to fall in the pre-lunch period. He added another amid the final capitulation to finish with four for 35.
Jermaine Blackwood fell for 1 straight after the lunch break and West Indies faced just 13 overs of the second session before they were all out. Jason Holder was last out for a top score of 20, giving Ngidi the treasured fifth wicket.
WEST INDIES (1st Innings):
K.C. Brathwaite b Nortje 15
S.D. Hope b Nortje 15
N. Bonner c de Kock b Rabada 10
R.L. Chase c Markram b Ngidi 8
K.R. Mayers c van der Dussen b Nortje 1
J. Blackwood c Petersen b Nortje 1
J.O. Holder c Markram b Ngidi 20
J. da Silva c Mulder b Ngidi 0
R.R.S. Cornwall c Markram b Ngidi 13
K.A.J. Roach c de Kock b Ngidi 1
J.N.T. Seales not out 0
EXTRAS (lb-4, w-6, nb-3) 13
TOTAL (all out, 40.5 overs) 97
FALL OF WKTS: 1-24, 2-31, 3-45, 4-46.
BOWLING (to-date): Rabada 10-2-24-1; Ngidi 7-2-10-0; Nortje 6-3-8-3; Maharaj 4-3-6-0.
SOUTH AFRICA (1st Innings, overnight 128-4) D. Elgar c Blackwood b Roach 0 A.D. Markram c da Silva b Seales 60 K.D. Petersen c Holder b Seales 19 H.E. van der Dussen c Hope b Holder 46 K. Verreynne c da Silva b Seales 6 Q. de Kock not out 44 P.W.A. Mulder not out 21 EXTRAS (B-4, LB-1, NB-4) 9 TOTAL (for five wkts, 72 overs) 205 FALL OF WKTS: 1-0, 2-34, 3-113, 4-119, 5-162. TO BAT: K.A. Maharaj, K. Rabada, L. Ngidi, A.A. Nortje. BOWLING (to-date): Roach 16-3-53-1; Holder 13-4-38-0; Seales 18-6-50-3 (4nb); Mayers 6-2-13-0; Cornwall 10-1-32-0; Chase 9-5-14-0.
Published in Dawn, June 12th, 2021