• ‘I’d love to see Proteas throw first punch’

    Former batsman Jacques Rudolph has implored the Proteas to pursue a staunch 438-run target, rather than attempt to force a draw, on day five of the second Test against England at Newlands in Cape Town on Tuesday.

    The hosts’ second innings has climbed to 126-2, with a further 312 runs required for victory – and a two-nil lead in the four-match series.

    Debutant Pieter Malan is at the crease, unbeaten on 63, alongside nightwatchman Keshav Maharaj. Malan replaced the injured Aiden Markram in the XI. Markram has been sidelined by a finger injury.

    Opening batsman Dean Elgar and the young Zubayr Hamza are out.

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    ‘I’d love to see the Proteas throw the first punch when the opportunity presents itself and put England under pressure. Too often in a chase teams opt for a defensive mindset. There are no gremlins in this pitch. Should be a great days cricket,’ said Rudolph on Twitter.

    The Proteas won the series opener at SuperSport Park in Centurion inside four days late last year. St George’s Park in Port Elizabeth will host the third Test. The final fixture will be played at the Wanderers in Johannsburg.

    Photo: BackPagePix

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