The Proteas were 258-8 at tea on day two of the third Test against New Zealand in Hamilton.
The start of the second session at Seddon Park was delayed by 15 minutes due to rain. Play resumed for little more than four overs – a period that witnessed the dismissal of Keshav Maharaj – before the weather returned with a vengeance.
Only 41 overs were bowled on day one due to the inclement weather. New Zealand were in the process of bowling the 41st over of day two when a heavy downpour brought halt to the play. Tea was taken during the break.
Following an inspection of the field and pitch, the umpires ruled that play will resume at 16:00 local time (05:00 SAST) . The weather and light will determine how many overs are completed before stumps.
The Proteas shouldn’t mind the interruption too much. They currently enjoy a 1-0 lead in the three-game series. A draw in this Test will ensure they leave New Zealand with the spoils.
The break should also give them time to reassess their strategy. After losing Maharaj early in the second session, they would do well to finish their first innings with a total of 300-plus.
Hashim Amla (50) and Faf du Plessis (53) got starts, but did not go on to produce scores of substance. Temba Bavuma (29) looked good until he played a rash stroke and gave his wicket away early on day two.
This Test match is yet to witness a substantial partnership of 100 runs or more. Quinton de Kock has played well for his 73 not out, but has received little support at the other end. It would be a shame if the left-handed batsman ran out of partners before he could reach his century, or before he could boost South Africa to an imposing total .
The conditions at Seddon Park have been good for seam bowling and Vernon Philander should be a factor when the Proteas eventually bowl. More rain is expected over the next three days, however, and the weather could have the final say in terms of the result of the Test.
SA 258-8 (1st innings) – Quinton de Kock 73 not out, Faf du Plessis 53, Matt Henry 4-57, Colin de Grandhomme 2-52