Kane Williamson and Jeet Raval steered New Zealand to 59-1 at tea on day two in Dunedin.
New Zealand have settled well after losing Tom Latham earlier in their innings. They currently trail South Africa by 249 runs with nine wickets still in hand.
The Proteas fought back from 22-3 to finish day one on 229-4. However, they showed less composure and application on the second morning of the match, and finished on 308 all out. The visitors’ stats of 79 runs for six wickets on day two tell a sorry story.
New Zealand pressured the South Africans into errors of judgement with their accurate bowling and sharp fielding. Dean Elgar departed after recording his highest score in Tests (140), while Temba Bavuma was caught behind on the leg side not long after surpassing 50.
Neil Wagner got the key wicket of Elgar, while Trent Boult and Jeetan Patel made quick work of the lower order and tail. The South African innings came to an end in the fifth over after lunch.
The momentum was with the hosts at that point. They enjoyed the best possible start when Latham and Raval took Kagiso Rabada for eight runs in the first over of the innings.
The pair battled to score against Vernon Philander, though. Philander found his rhythm, and eventually found the edge of Latham’s bat.
Raval and Williamson put on 44 runs for the second wicket in the lead-up to tea. While the Proteas did well to keep the run rate down, they struggled to put the New Zealand batsmen under significant pressure.
SA 308 (1st innings) – Dean Elgar 140, Temba Bavuma 64, Trent Boult 4-64, Neil Wagner 3-88
NZ 59-1 (1st innings) – Jeet Raval 26 not out, Kane Williamson 21 not out, Vernon Philander 1-11
New Zealand trail by 249 runs
Photo: Dianne Manson/Getty Images