Windies facing four-day defeat

CENTURION –– Barring two days of rain, or perhaps an overnight abandonment of this tour by the West Indies, South Africa appear certain to go one-up in their Test series tomorrow at Centurion Park.

It was the now too familiar limp batting of the West Indies, akin to slaughtering of lambs, that saw them being dismissed for 201 in their first innings and then being asked to follow on. Inevitably they lost two further wickets in their second innings and at the close, still some distance from their hosts’ 552, were still 275 runs in deficit.

A dejected Kraigg Brathwaite leaves the field after being dismissed twice in one day.
A dejected Kraigg Brathwaite leaves the field after being dismissed twice in one day.

West Indies’ main tormentor was seam bowler Vernon Philander who bowled a probing off-stump line throughout and troubled all the batsmen. He finished the day with five wickets including a first-innings haul of 4 for 29 in 15 overs.

His first wicket was somewhat fortuitous though, compliments of a howler from third umpire Paul Reiffel who overturned Billy Bowden’s not out decision to a catch at the wicket despite no evidence from the available technology to do so.

Openers Kraigg Brathwaite and Devon Smith had added 72 untroubled runs when an attempted pull seemed to result in the ball brushing Smith’s thigh pad rather than his bat on the way through to wicketkeeper A.B. de Villiers. Smith had moved confidently to 35 and his loss was the start of the derailment of the innings.

Brathwaite then followed in Philander’s next over. Earlier, he had edged him just short of second slip. This time a thinner edge flew to Hashim Amla at first. Leon Johnson and Marlon Samuels stabilised West Indies until lunch in a session extended to two-and-a-half hours because of the rain that washed out the final session on the second day.

South Africa were depleted in the field, although unlike West Indies the mishaps had not affected their bowling attack. Quinton de Kock, the wicketkeeper, twisted an ankle and Faf du Plessis’ virus had been bad enough for him to visit hospital. There were niggles later for both Dale Steyn and Philander. Johnson was the one top-order West Indies batsman to depart wastefully, driving Kyle Abbott loosely to cover in the third over after lunch. When Philander rapped Samuels on the pads before he had scored, the bowler’s excitement at a perfectly-executed plan was apparent. Samuels’ weakness for being trapped on the crease early in an innings had been exposed, but replays revealed he was struck just outside the line.

Instead, it was Morkel who removed Samuels, causing him to chop on as he brought one back sharply from around the wicket. Shivnarine Chanderpaul’s crooked resistance entertained for a while –– one swing around from his open stance to work Abbott through point off an open face defied geometrical rules –– but he was plucked by Alviro Petersen at slip off Philander.

When Jermaine Blackwood fell on the stroke of tea, an excellent low catch by Petersen at second slip, legitimised only after numerous TV replays, it was undeniably South Africa’s session.

West Indies’ capitulation after tea was swift. Captain Denesh Ramdin succumbed to a solitary over of left-arm spin from Dean Elgar, Jerome Taylor pushed a return catch to Morkel next ball and with Kemar Roach unable to bat, it was all over when Morkel flattened Cotterrell’s stumps.

South Africa enforced the follow on but were flatter in the final session despite picking up a further two wickets, with Morkel dispatching Braithwaite for 20 after Philander had accounted for Smith.

Steyn pulled up with a hamstring problem in the first over and Philander also left the field, meaning part-timers Stiaan van Zyl and Dean Elgar got through more overs than they would have expected.


South Africa 1st Innings 552/5 declared
(140.3 Overs)

West Indies 1st Innings

K Brathwaite c Amla b Philander 34

D Smith c de Villiers b Philander 35

L Johnson c sub (R Peterson) b Abbott 31

M Samuels b Morkel 33

S Chanderpaul c Petersen b Philander 21

J Blackwood c Petersen b Philander 12

D Ramdin*+ c van Zyl b Elgar 14

J Taylor c & b Morkel 4

S Benn not out 6

S Cottrell b Morkel 2

K Roach absent hurt –

Total: 201 All Out (60.2 Overs)

Extras: (lb 6, w 3) 9

Fall of Wickets: 1-72 (Smith, 21.4 ov), 2-73 (Brathwaite, 23.5 ov), 3-117 (Johnson, 34.1 ov), 4-162 (Samuels, 47.6 ov), 5-169 (Chanderpaul, 51.4 ov), 6-184 (Blackwood, 55.2 ov), 7-193 (Ramdin, 57.6 ov), 8-193 (Taylor, 58.1 ov), 9-201 (Cottrell, 60.2 ov).

South Africa 1st Innings Bowling: D Steyn 14-3-53-0, V Philander 15-6-29-4, K Abbott 14-3-50-1, M Morkel 15.2-4-55-3, D Elgar 2-0-8-1.

West Indies 1st Innings (trail; 351) following-on

K Brathwaite c Petersen b Morkel 20

D Smith c sub (T Bavuma) b Philander 5

L Johnson not out 33

M Samuels not out 13

Total: 76/2 (27 Overs)

Extras: (lb 2, w 3) 5

Still to Bat: S Chanderpaul, J Blackwood, D Ramdin*+, J Taylor, K Roach, S Cottrell, S Benn.

Fall of Wickets 1-8 (Smith, 3.2 ov), 2-52 (Brathwaite, 19.3 ov).

South Africa 2nd Innings Bowling: D Steyn 0.5-0-3-0, M Morkel 7.1-1-26-1, V Philander 3-3-0-1, K Abbott 3-0-11-0, S van Zyl 10-2-22-0, D Elgar 3-0-12-0.

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