Keshav Maharaj bamboozled New Zealand by taking best figures of 6-40 as the hosts were bundled out for 171 on Saturday.
Day three saw Maharaj display a masterclass of variety and turn, leaving the Black Caps with no answer on how to deal with the left-arm orthodox spinner. Caught, bowled, nicked or stumped, the opposition were bedazzled by Maharaj’s Man of the Match performance.
With the Kiwis on the ropes at 64-3, thanks to a brilliant opening spell from Morne Morkel (3-50), Maharaj ripped through the middle order. Henry Nicholls, James Neesham, Jeet Raval, Colin de Grandhomme, Tim Southee and finally BJ Watling, all fell victim to the 27-year-old’s trickery.
The pick of his wickets was the dismissal of Raval (80 off 174 balls). The opener went dancing outside his crease as a response to a looped delivery wide outside off, only to miss a drive as Quinton de Kock took off the bails.
This was only the second time that a South African spinner has taken more than five wickets in an innings at the Basin Reserve, the last time was 85 years ago when Quintin McMillan took 5-125 in 1932.
Coupled with his two scalps from New Zealand’s first innings, Maharaj ended with match-figures of 8-87 to help SA go 1-0 up in the series.
Photo: Dianne Manson/Getty Images