Jon Cardinelli reflects on the big moments that shaped day three of the Test at Centurion.
BATSMAN OF THE DAY
Not many candidates here. Kraigg Braithwaite looked good at times in the West Indies’ first innings, especially against the likes of Dale Steyn and Morné Morkel.
BOWLER OF THE DAY
Vernon Philander went into this Test with a 2014 record of 10 wickets in six matches. He proceeded to claim four of the West Indies’ first innings wickets, and one in the second dig.
FIELDER OF THE DAY
Struggling for runs, Alviro Petersen has managed to contribute to the South African cause in other ways. Petersen took a good low catch at second slip to dismiss Shiv Chanderpaul in the first innings. He did exceptionally well to get under a dipping ball after Jermaine Blackwood found a thick edge. The juggle at the end of the day was comical, but Petersen held on to end Kraigg Brathwaite’s innings.
SHOT OF THE DAY
Marlon Samuels’s limited foot movement was ultimately his undoing, and yet, he did play some great shots from the crease. The best of the lot came midway through the afternoon session, when he rocked onto the back foot and drove Dale Steyn for four.
DELIVERY OF THE DAY
Take your pick from the four Vernon Philander deliveries that found the edge. For me, the best of the lot was the ball that removed Kraigg Brathwaite in the West Indies’ first innings. The opening batsman couldn’t have done much more than nick the ball to first slip.
CALL OF THE DAY
Why won’t anybody listen to Billy Bowden? The umpire made several excellent decisions on day three, as television evidence confirmed after every review. The decision to give Devon Smith not out in the first innings was the correct one, even though the third umpire felt differently and eventually overturned it.
FAIL OF THE DAY
Third umpire Paul Reiffel will want to forget the incident that led to Devon Smith losing his wicket and the West Indies losing the initiative. Replays confirmed that the ball by Vernon Philander had brushed Smith’s thigh rather than his bat. This decision allowed the Proteas a chance to get among the West Indies top order after an unsuccessful opening hour.
MILESTONE OF THE DAY
Marlon Samuels went past the 3000-run mark during his first innings knock of 33.
STAT OF CONCERN
0 – the number of West Indian batsmen to score a half century in this match. Thus far, Devon Smith’s 35 in the first innings is the top score for the visitors.
FALLING LIKE FLIES
Proteas wicketkeeper Quinton de Kock rolled his ankle before the day’s play, while Faf du Plessis was unable to field because of an abdominal issue. At one stage, the Proteas had as many as four subs on the park.