About the Match
South Africa registered a thumping 177-run victory over hosts Australia in the first test to take a 1-0 lead in the 3-match test series; the Proteas are buoyant at present and will like to convert their enthusiasm into another cracking win when they meet the Aussies for the 2nd Test at Hobart from 12th November. Posting a massive 539-run target for Australia in the first test, the South African speedsters got the better of the hosts and dismissed them all-out for 361; Australia won’t take this humiliating defeat lightly and will be geared up to dish out a fitting reply. It needs to be seen if the visitors can continue with their winning momentum or fall prey to Australia’s revamped efforts.
Warner, Khawaja and Peter Nevill displayed their batting skills in the first match, helping to build a good foundation in reply to South Africa but in the end, the hosts succumbed to pressure and lost the match by a huge margin of 177 runs. While Warner scored 97 in the first innings, Khawaja got the same number in the second and Nevill helped keep the score moving with an unbeaten 60; however, others like Smith, Mitchell Marsh and Voges couldn’t build steady partnerships.
Starc and Hazlewood kept a check on the Proteas, claiming 7 wickets between them while Lyon and Siddle used their variations to dismiss 3 more and restrict South Africa to 242. However, in the 2nd innings despite a good show by Hazlewood, Siddle, and Marsh, the opposition romped off to 540.
The massive loss came as a shock to Smith and company but they will now be determined to make amends; the batsmen will need to reinvent themselves and with Joe Mennie likely to make his debut being the replacement for injured Siddle, they will look to strengthen the pace attack.
Fast-bowler Kagiso Rabada’s sensational 5-wicket haul in the 2nd innings brought the Aussie batting line-up to its knees and got them all out for just 361. Speedster Philander, spinners Maharaj, Duminy and medium-pacer Bavuma took a wicket each and helped the team register a big win. D Elgar and Duminy helped set up a solid target with Elgar scoring 127 runs and Duminy posting a brilliant 141.
Quinton de Kock has been consistent with the bat as he scored 84 runs in the first innings and came up with a 64 off 100 in the 2nd; along with Faf du Plessis, Philander, who played a useful knock of 73 runs and Bavuma, the middle and lower-order can also keep the scoreboard ticking. Philander’s 4-56 demolished the Aussie batting line-up in the 1st innings and he can continue with his good form.
The bowling attack has been phenomenal and barring the change of Kyle Abbott replacing Steyn, who is being rested, in the upcoming test the others are likely to feature again. With Rabada in superb form and Abbott, Philander and others like Duminy and Maharaj backing up with spin options, the Proteas will look to dominate again with the ball.
South Africa has taken a 1-0 lead in the series and will be motivated to repeat the winning performance here; however, Australia is likely to fight hard with bat and ball to make a comeback. The contest will surely see a lot of fireworks but we feel that the hosts will take this round to keep the series alive