Proteas bowler Anrich Nortje says the plan to use the team’s fast-bowlers in short spells was critical to his impressive showing with the ball on Friday.
Nortje bagged another five-wicket haul and led the Proteas back into the contest as Pakistan were dismissed for 272.
After the slow deck from Karachi in the first Test, the second day’s action in Rawalpindi provided a bit more bounce for the seamers than what was probably expected at first.
Nortje labelled the energy from the fast-bowlers in shorter stints as a key factor to the success the Proteas achieved on the second day.
‘Coming into this series there were one or two things that I tried to improve on, especially to help with my lines and control. We had a chat about the energy of the fast bowlers. Trying to create something in our spells and when we come on to try and create something. That’s exactly what has happened in the first innings,’ Nortje said at the end of the day.
‘We didn’t bowl long spells, we tried to dig it in as much as possible and hit the wicket as much as possible. That was the plan for this game, to do the short spells and have as much energy when you do come on.
Both camps were unsure what the surface would offer before the clash got under way on Thursday. Nortje, though, says the Proteas fast-bowlers were excellent in how they used the small opportunities the pitch presented to the quicker bowlers.
‘When the ball was a bit harder, we saw an opportunity to get a couple of short balls through and at the end of the day it paid off to have a bit more bounce. Still being subcontinent, you still want to try and be on the money with your lines.
‘There hasn’t been a lot in it for the seamers. We try to utilise when conditions are in our favour. I don’t think the fast-bowlers will be completely out for it. I think there will be different opportunities and methods to go about it,’ he added.