Rabada, Viljoen strike early

January 15, 2016
Hardus Viljoen Hardus Viljoen celebrates his first Test wicket

Debutant Hardus Viljoen took the big wicket of Alastair Cook with his first ball as England went to lunch on 27-2.

Test careers don’t start much better than that, even if his first delivery in Test cricket was a loosener down the leg side. Cook decided to get something on it and managed a nick which led to a very good catch by Dane Vilas diving to his right.

Viljoen had to wait 10 overs before getting a bowl as AB de Villiers opted for Chris Morris and Kagiso Rabada to open the bowling. It was a somewhat strange decision as Morne Morkel, the experienced bowler in an otherwise inexperienced attack, had to wait to have a go.

Rabada was most threatening, beating the outside edge on a number of occasions before Alex Hales, without using his feet, just pushed at a full delivery to nick one to AB de Villiers at slip.

South Africa started much better with the ball than England did yesterday and bowled much fuller on a pitch which looks like it will reward bowlers who force batsmen to drive.

Viljoen had a good two overs before lunch and looked as threatening as Rabada, one of his deliveries clocking 149.5 km/h on the speed gun.

The first session belonged to South Africa as their tail-enders added 46 runs to the overnight score of 267, enabling them to post a competitive 313 after Morris and Rabada shared a 56-run partnership and Viljoen and Morkel chipped in with a 32-run stand.

For ball-by-ball commentary, click below:

Picture: Getty


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