Dean Elgar says he and fellow opener Aiden Markram need to get the Proteas off to better starts.
In South Africa’s 113-run first Test loss to India in Centurion, Elgar and Markram’s opening partnerships of just 2 and 1 put the rest of the batting lineup under pressure.
The Proteas could only post 197 in their first innings and 191 in their second, with Elgar scoring 1 and 77 and Markram 13 and 1.
In contrast, India’s win was set up by a first-innings opening partnership of 117 by KL Rahul (123) and Mayank Agarwal (60) on day one.
“We know what it is about. Opening in Test cricket and facing the new ball is not easy. You get a good ball and you’re watching the rest of the game,” said Elgar.
“They executed their batting fundamentals better and utilised the first hour in their favour. They left well, attacked when they needed to, so they must get credit for that.”
Markram was bowled twice by Mohammed Shami with Elgar being dismissed twice by paceman Jasprit Bumrah.
“Aiden and I have had the rough of the green at the moment. I got a good ball in the first innings and that happens,” said Elgar.
“We’re very mindful that as the opening pair, we need to start well and capitalise on good starts when we have the opportunity.
“Aiden’s dismissal in the second innings was a rough one. It wasn’t a ball that should have got him out.
“When you’re behind in a Test match, these kinds of things happen.”