Wicketkeeper-batsman Quinton de Kock joked about running out teammate Temba Bavuma, as South Africa struggled on day one of the first Test against Sri Lanka at Kingsmead in Durban on Wednesday.
De Kock and Bavuma shared a promising 21-run partnership for the fifth wicket. The alliance ended when De Kock drove the ball into bowler Vishwa Fernando’s foot – and it ricocheted into the stumps. Non-striker Bavuma, meanwhile, left the crease and failed to return quickly enough.
‘I didn’t mean to do that. Shame. I just tried to hit it past the bowler, but the ball hit the bowler’s foot. I somehow felt Temba was too slow to get back to the crease. It all comes with age. Temba is also becoming an old man. I will try not do that again,’ quipped De Kock.
The left-handed De Kock’s 80 saw the Proteas recover from a precarious 110 for five to a respectable 235 all out. The visitors later moved to a burgeoning 49 for one.
‘We managed to rebuild quite nicely and we did quite well to get to where we are at the moment. Obviously that was not the best start and the guys in the changing room were nervous, but the rebuilding phase was pretty good,’ said De Kock.
‘Going in there, I was just reminding myself to get into strong positions and remain positive and not get into a hole. My main thought process was to score runs. I started off quite slowly, but that was because of the nature of the wicket. It’s always tough to get going on this wicket, but I eventually managed to get going.’
The hosts recalled spinner Keshav Maharaj to the XI at the expense of batsman Theunis de Bruyn – and named a seam attack comprising quartet Dale Steyn, Vernon Philander, Kagiso Rabada and Duanne Olivier.
‘The pitch was a bit slow and a bit tacky – and there is still quite a bit of movement in it. You can see that it is starting to spin quite early. Keshav will come into it quite soon, but our four-seamer attack will want to be bowling more too. I think the pitch will quicken up a bit and harden up. It will become a better wicket for batting. We will see what happens,’ added De Kock.
Photo: Lee Warren | Gallo Images