Proteas coach Ottis Gibson says his team will play on in the third Test if the match referee decides it’s safe to do so.
The match referee and umpires took the players off the field late in the day’s play after a short delivery hit Dean Elgar on the grill of his helmet. Elgar had taken a few blows earlier in his innings, as had India’s batsmen during their second innings of 247. While the umpires inspected the pitch on a couple of occasions then, they opted for the game to continue.
South Africa were 17-1 when Elgar was hit, still needing another 224 runs to win the third Test.
‘We are here to play cricket. We still want to play cricket,’ Gibson said when asked if the Proteas wanted the match to continue.
‘The match referee’s decision will be on player safety. If the match referee says play on, we are going to play.
‘Throughout the whole game on both sides, you saw batsmen wearing a few. India didn’t complain and we didn’t either.
‘Dean got in hit in the face, he wasn’t able to take evasive action. The match referee feels there is something there for him to look at. Once they make a decision, we will get on with it.’
The Proteas requested a ‘spicy wicket’ for this Test – green with plenty of bounce – but it appears to have backfired.
‘Every team is good in their conditions and they use the conditions to their advantage,’ said Gibson when asked if the groundsman should be left to do his job.
‘When we go to India, the wickets spin. Every team will try and use home advantage. I can’t speak for groundsmen. We asked for a certain type of pitch and the groundsman has a month to get it right.’