South Africa v New Zealand, 1st Test, Cape Town, 2nd day

Brownlie fights but South Africa on top

The Report by David Hopps

January 3, 2013

Comments: 51 | Text size: A | A

New Zealand 169 for 4 (Brownlie 69*, McCullum 51) and 45 trail South Africa 347 for 8 dec (Petersen 106, De Villiers 67) by 133 runs
Scorecard and ball-by-ball details

Martin Guptill fell without scoring, South Africa v New Zealand, 1st Test, Cape Town, 2nd day, January 3, 2013
Martin Guptill fell before New Zealand could open their account in the second innings © AFP

New Zealand will grasp any consolation after suffering the indignity of being bundled out for 45 in their first innings and avoiding defeat in two days will do for a start. They will resume the third day 133 runs behind with six wickets remaining after South Africa's quick bowlers failed to repeat the havoc of the opening day.

Their chief source of resistance came from Dean Brownlie, who struck a 44-ball half-century to be 69 not out at the close and collected a few bruises to show for his labours after goading Dale Steyn into a hostile conclusion to the second day. The bulk of Brownlie's cricket until three years ago was played in Perth and it showed, too, as he prospered on the back foot, square of the wicket on the off side, in an enterprising post-tea innings.

South Africa were architects of their own frustration as they dropped Brownlie, twice, and Brendon McCullum in the final session. Brownlie escaped twice at gully on 23, Dean Elgar and Alviro Petersen spurning opportunities presented by Steyn and Vernon Philander respectively. Jacques Kallis' attempt to catch McCullum off Steyn at second slip was a worthier effort, but it all contributed to New Zealand adding 133 in the final session.

New Zealand had batted doggedly up to tea, but they had lost Martin Guptill for nought, when he clipped Steyn to midwicket, and Kane Williamson, who looked in the mood for some prolonged blocking until a tempting short delivery from Jacques Kallis jagged off a crack to have him caught at second slip.

New Zealand had lasted only 19.2 overs in the first innings and, if nobody seriously expected a repeat of that, they were vulnerable on a pitch showing signs of unreliable bounce. The strong winds which closed Table Mountain in the build-up to the game and cracked and crusted this Newlands surface threatened to have the final say.

Only when Brownlie began to hit about him did McCullum's mood lighten. For him to bear his responsibilities so heavily was unusual, but he was a new Test captain appointed in controversial circumstances, criticised in some quarters for an overly-optimistic attitude in batting first and then for placing excessively attacking fields in return. If he was ever going to begin a Test innings strokelessly, this was it.

He fell lbw to Robin Petersen, his decision to review the decision owing more to his status and New Zealand's plight than any realistic hope of overturning it. Daniel Flynn's colourless innings ended with extra bounce from Kallis and an inside edge to the wicketkeeper.

If South Africa were not hampering themselves by dropping catches, they were also making a hash of DRS. They failed to challenge umpire Ian Gould's "not out" ruling when to have done so would have won an lbw decision while Williamson was on 4. They then wasted a review when Gould refused a catch at the wicket with Williamson on 9, the ball having brushed the batsman's pocket.

What followed almost brought DRS into disrepute. There was a delay of nearly five minutes before the third umpire, Kumar Dharmasena, gave his decision. In the background at square leg, as endless Hot Spot replays were studied, Hashim Amla's long beard was shown as pure white and made him look like an ancient. There again, as we waited inexplicably for Dharmasena, none of us felt any younger.

Final-session frustrations or not, South Africa must feel the Test is almost won. It was difficult on a summer's day like this, with the Test entirely in command, for a South African player not to feel content, but Dean Elgar would not be happy with his world.

All Elgar had to show for South Africa's series-winning victory against Australia in Perth last month was a pair on Test debut. It was a tough ask, summoned to the tour late and expected to contribute to a series in the balance, and it proved beyond him.

At Newlands, he resumed his Test career in rather gentler circumstances, but he could not take the opportunity. Five minutes before lunch, Trent Boult made one climb outside off stump and he edged it to the wicketkeeper. He walked off shaking his head, his prototype moustache accentuating a mournful countenance.

Elgar got off the mark against his first ball, from Chris Martin, jabbing through square leg, but progression never really came. Two boundaries off Franklin in successive overs flew through slips and gully, one of them with only one hand on the bat. When he was 18, New Zealand could have overturned Rod Tucker's refusal of Boult's lbw appeal, but they failed to review.

New Zealand's seam attack had been on the short side on the first day and their ground-fielding had at times been deplorable. It would not take much to improve such standards and they did. Boult needed only one delivery to account for Alviro Petersen - the first ball of the second over. He had added three to his overnight 103 when he dragged on.

At 38 years old and after 71 Tests, Martin is aware that not too many more top-order batsmen will fall his way before he calls time on his Test career. His long service was rewarded with three more good wickets. Faf du Plessis was caught at gully, searching for one, and he bowled AB de Villiers and Peterson in successive overs immediately after lunch before Smith's declaration.

Bare head glistening with sweat and thick white headband across his forehead, Martin bounded into the crease in the happy manner of a tennis coach at a private club, intent upon communicating enthusiasm before having a knock-up with the members. As far as New Zealand are concerned, the day amounted to more than a knock-up, it was one heck of a rally.

David Hopps is the UK editor of ESPNcricinfo

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© ESPN Sports Media Ltd.

Posted by Harmony111 on (January 5, 2013, 15:58 GMT)

@Chris Salmon: Firstly, Ind-SA have played 5 series since 92 in SA and not 4. The 3-0 series wins you talk about has 2 series losses in the 90s. Since the 00s, it is 1-0 to SA in SA (2-0 + 1-1 + 1-1). Clearly the trend is that Ind have been improving. In fact Ind had the lead of 1-0 in 2007 series. Same could have been said for Ind-Eng and Ind-Aus but for the two 4-0 losses which no one saw coming and which I hope are anomalies :-p

Your point could be answered in two ways. 1: When it suits others they say winning matters, whether by an innings or by 1 run. Thus, whether some nations can compete in other places should not matter. If they fail to win then they fail to win. This doesn't quite strengthen Ind's record vs others but it does mean that whether Ind lose in 4 days in RSA and SA lose to Ind in the 3rd session of the 5th day doesn't make much of a diff.

2: Ind lose to Aus in Aus in 3 days => Ind can't compete & if Aus lose to Ind in Ind in 3 days => Pitch Complaint. Funny na?

Posted by TheRisingTeam on (January 4, 2013, 14:09 GMT)

@Htc-Android:- Herath is a left arm spinner and Bangladesh have so many of these we're use to it in our domestic scene. Malinga doesn't play in tests anymore and can been found out the more you play against him like India does. The more you can take him on, the more easier it will be for the batsman once you get use to him bowling so he's NOT impossible besides, we took him on well at the Asia Cup which you lost to us. I hope you haven't forgotten what Samuels did to him at the World T20 final so our team will be looking at that come the ODI series. Mendis? If Bangladesh can manage Narine and Ajmal without serious problems then Mendis will be the third easiest. Sri Lanka will probably win the test series only 1-0 but Bangladesh will beat and take the ODI series but Sri Lanka needs to win all these matches otherwise there will be questions.

Posted by   on (January 4, 2013, 10:51 GMT)

@Taimur - I hear you, and yah India have produced far more world class spinners. But I think the problem arises that India only really compete as a test nation in the subcontinent, whereas the "white" nations compete everywhere:

For example,as a south african:

SA record against India:

In India test series since 1994:

5 test series, Drawn: 2, lost: 2, won: 1. So India lead 2-1.

In South Africa test series since 1994:

4 test series, Drawn: 1, Won: 3, Lost: 0. South Africa lead 3-0.

I am sure India have similar poor away records against Aus and Eng, and this during a period of ten years where you could arguably boast the finest top and middle order in the world.

Personally I think you guys need pitches to encourage the development of fast bowlers so you can produce better fast bowlers to take wickets away from home and compete better away from home. England just beat you at home and the greats are retiring. I think you guys are in trouble for a while.

Posted by Greatest_Game on (January 4, 2013, 10:29 GMT)

@ Ryan Stephen. Dale Steyn's Nagpur 7 for was part of a 1-1 drawn series in 2010. Sa won in Nagpur & India won in Kolkata. In 1999/2000 SA won a 2 match series in India 2-0.

Posted by   on (January 4, 2013, 8:52 GMT)

" When was the last time that South Africa won a series in the subcontinent or Australia or England?"

Remember Dale Steyns 7-for in Nagpur not so long ago? Innings victory over India leading to a series win.

With regards to winning in Australia or England, those are exactly our last two results.

Posted by   on (January 4, 2013, 8:06 GMT)

@Taimur Huk - You make a strong argument and I must say that i agree with you, what i want to take you to task about is your apparent misconception that race has anything to do with, How about you stop seeing color and think about your own message, stop being so prejudice in your heart.

Posted by Harmony111 on (January 4, 2013, 8:01 GMT)

@Waws: So you assume that two subcontinental teams can't play good quality cricket in the subcontinent. This is just another form of a patronizing attitude that people like you have for the teams from the subcontinent. It also talks of a certain cunning trick where you ask your opponent to play on your own terms instead of proving your own salt against him in his own den. Your comment is like an Italian Chef refusing to believe that a Chinese Chef could make awesome cuisine too and saying that unless he can make good Italian food he won't be considered a good chef. In a way you are suggesting that only these 3 teams of RSA, Eng and Aus can play good quality cricket while the subcontinental teams are just not good enough on their own. Would not be too much of stretching things were I to say you are somehow implying the white man's burden here cos only these 3 teams and places can provide high quality cricket in your opinion. I hope you come out of this kind of thinking soon.

Posted by   on (January 4, 2013, 7:30 GMT)

@Waws-name one world-class spinner that South Africa has produced? Name another Australian spinner besides Shane Warne? name another English spinner besides Graeme Swann? Ashley Giles, Graeme Swann, and Paul Harris are club-level bowlers compared to the great spinners of subcontinent like Saqlian, Kumble, Murli, and Ajmal to name just a few. When was the last time that South Africa won a series in the subcontinent or Australia or England? It took Eng 28 years to win a Test series in India and don' t forget the humiliation they suffered against Pakistan in UAE. They only escaped with a draw in Sri Lanka against a weak and young SL team. Bottom line is, you want to make the argument that our Asian teams are not good enough to win against the "white" teams in their countries, but I can make a similar argument about the failure of the 'white" teams to win series in the subcontinent ON A CONSISTENT BASIS, AND NOT ONCE IN A LIFETIME. Don't have so much prejudice in your heart. Cheers.

Posted by Waws on (January 4, 2013, 6:31 GMT)

I will never rate a team from the subcontinent highly untill they can prove that they can play and perform in countries like SA ,AUS ,ENG...they are just not good enough,when last did a subcontinent team won a test series in SA,Aus,Eng ?? The standard of cricket in countries like Sri and the young guys coming through are poor,sorry to say but Sri are nothing without their big 3

Posted by gothetaniwha on (January 4, 2013, 5:07 GMT)

Warm Coffee should buy a bigger TV so he can see the crowd

Posted by bull01 on (January 4, 2013, 4:48 GMT)

What one needs to point out, is not whether NZ or SA got it right with regards when to use or not use the DRS. The reality is that the technology has shown that the umpires have got it wrong more often than not. And that is really worrying.

Posted by Htc-Android on (January 4, 2013, 4:31 GMT)

@TheRisingTeam. It wont be easy for bangladesh, specially against malinga, herath and mendis.

Posted by Htc-Android on (January 4, 2013, 4:28 GMT)

@Warm_Coffee. we have chandimal who scored Heavily in AUs,Eng,SA in ODIs. Also he scored 2 fifties in his debut test match in SA. This is not normal for a subcontinent player. Thissera perera won 6 MOM awards within his first 50 ODIs. Also we have mathews performing consistently. Upul Tharanga has scored 12 centuries in ODIs. Thirimanne scored a 91 in his 1st test match in Aus,( remember he just arrived in Aus 2 days before the start of the test match) and u are saying we are nothing without our trio. Yes we might struggle against top teams like Eng,SA and Aus. But not against Bangladesh. Regarding our U19 defeat. Our team never relied on strong U19 performers.remember guys like malinga, murali, vass, mahela, sanga, mendis dint reperesent SL in any U19 matches. So this wont be a problem for us. Yeah i agree. ur team is improving. lets wait until the series starts.

Posted by Lermy on (January 4, 2013, 2:08 GMT)

What really hurts about being bundled out for 45, is the fact that when Australia were all out for 47, they were 9 down for less than 26, the all time low record, if I remember rightly. Why oh why couldn't they have taken that record off us???? That's where NZ excels, they set low standards and consistently achieve them!!!!

Posted by shortsillypoint on (January 4, 2013, 0:48 GMT)

Sonicattack - right on - it was like the vid ump was determined to find a way Williamson was out. One view was enough and the batsmen should get the benefit of the doubt anyway What was with the SA aggro - heaps of short pitched bowling and all the sledging? If they had taken their catches and bowled like in the first innings it would be all over now! Trying to be the new Aussies perhaps?

Posted by   on (January 4, 2013, 0:46 GMT)

@OzWally Luke Ronchi was born in NZ mate.

good to see some fight after the first day. Really gutted with the performance. Gave people more reasons for people to give me stick for supporting NZ and enjoying cricket.

Posted by Greatest_Game on (January 4, 2013, 0:36 GMT)

I recently saw a cartoon involving cricket. Don't know the name - hoping someone here can help?

The character is like Mr. Bean crossed with the Colonel in Fawlty Towers. He blunders around, randomly spouting indecipherable cricket jargon. He always gets his stats wrong, & then laughs it off as "good sporting fun!"

Daily, at 8am, he has breakfast: 2 hard-boiled eggs & a strong Bloody Mary. Then he writes letters to The Times, The Times of India, The Cricketing Times, and The Times Have Changed (but I did not.). When writing, he lampoons his imagined enemies, and claims they are conspiring to defeat his village cricket team, which he believes is the greatest ever!

At exactly noon he has a Gin & Tonic. After few more, he wobbles around, using his cane to demonstrate to the bored nurses the finer nuances of a "proper" front-foot defense. "Yes Mr. Lunge," they soothingly murmur. "We know now, we know."

Anyone recognise this cartoon?

Cricinfo - please publish. Urgent help needed.

Posted by TheRisingTeam on (January 3, 2013, 23:23 GMT)

@Htc-Android - You can talk, probably win the test series 1-0 but I bet you we will win the ODI series. Sri Lanka have no excuses to lose any game against us when we clash next month till then all the best.

Posted by Warm_Coffee on (January 3, 2013, 23:18 GMT)

@Htc-Android:- Your team is nothing without your trio and once they're gone, Sri Lanka is also one of those teams that is going downhill. We already own your youth team infact it was us that knocked you out in that under-19 tournament. But yeah I agree with you, lets wait until yours and my team clash later next month and you'll know what us Bangladeshi's have been talking about. Get ready to taste the reality soon its not going to be easy.

Posted by Warm_Coffee on (January 3, 2013, 23:14 GMT)

@corzaNZ: What? was I even talking about my team on here? check the comments carefully I was talking about the crowd obviously you have cold feet truth hurts I know everyone is entitled to view sorry :P

Posted by   on (January 3, 2013, 22:12 GMT)

What is with the pitch? When Martin and Franklin look like Roberts and Holding and then it flattens back out again, very odd.

Posted by proteasfan99 on (January 3, 2013, 21:59 GMT)

A.B might enjoy keeping for now but in two years time he wont be able to carry the burden. why not have a young keeper batsman bat at number 7 in the absence of dumminy for now. probably de Kock so we can give that young player a chance to feel Test cricket's vibe with less pressure on him. Ealgar is a waste and I do not understand what the plan with him going forward is. If there is genuine need to strengthen the top 7 then let Mckenzie back into the squad at 5 and have A.B and Flaf drop one down each.

Posted by Htc-Android on (January 3, 2013, 21:26 GMT)

@Warm_Coffee. looks like you are on high after beating WI. dont worry mate. u will realize where u belong after the Sri lankan series...:P

Posted by crafty-Rabbi on (January 3, 2013, 21:17 GMT)

Home advantage is one of many factors. But it did not help India beat England, in India, nor England beat the Proteas in England. My money would be on England in New Zealand. NZ's structure has disintegrated and there is turmoil between management and players. Necevans is right about one thing. Those Pakistanis are a mercurial side and can beat any team on their day. It used to be asked "Which Pakistani team will turn up." Well now they are becoming more consistent. They thrashed England in the recent test series and now they have given the Indians a good hiding in the ODI's. They have to be a good bet. Confidence and momentum plus success must outweigh home advantage.

Posted by OzWally on (January 3, 2013, 21:16 GMT)

I bet no one had Dean Brownlie in their pool as the 1st Australian to score a century this year. Hope he goes on to make it, but it will be close to see if he is first in 2013 with Australia coming to bat today (and the time difference involved).

And with Luke Ronchi on the verge of selection, glad to see NZ taking the England approach to Test respectability.

Posted by sonicattack on (January 3, 2013, 21:16 GMT)

Quite enjoyed watching NZ fight back today, made SA look rather mortal (dropped catches) and Philander looked very ordinary after tea, pitch-map of his bowling before and after tea was very different. just like for most of the first two tests against Aus, SA sometimes really do switch off.

Posted by corzaNZ on (January 3, 2013, 20:51 GMT)

@Warm_Coffee who are you to criticize so much? who cares if it was a full house or if there was only 10 people there. and im a proud NZer, NZ is my team, so im gonna support them no matter what and it was good to see there fight compared to the first innings. remember this is SA vs NZ, nowhere is Bangladesh involved so just keep your little opinions to yourself that no one cares about and enjoy your wait till whenever it is that you finally get to watch your team again

Posted by R_U_4_REAL_NICK on (January 3, 2013, 20:46 GMT)

Dropping catches? DRS controversy? Surely not... in cricket? It can't be possible... What is this, like 2013? What's next - a duck for CS Martin?

Posted by GreedyFly on (January 3, 2013, 20:21 GMT)

Good to see Brownlie getting some runs. If he can go on and get some kind of respectable lead for NZ then it could be a career defining innings. I think that Brownlie/McCullum session showed glimpses of the old Black Caps. They've lost a bit of their gumption due to trying to play a style not totally suited to their natural game. Attacking can gain fast rewards. High risk though.

Posted by SurlyCynic on (January 3, 2013, 20:20 GMT)

Warm_Coffee: Newlands has been a sell-out in terms of public seating for the past two days. The only empty seats have been unused corporate or member seats, as well as public seats where the individual is elsewhere on the ground, buying food, drink, etc. Not sure why your viewing of the 'highlights' makes you better informed than someone who was at the game.

Posted by Warm_Coffee on (January 3, 2013, 20:00 GMT)

@Fahiem25: Dude I saw the highlights, there were large sections of empty seat everywhere basically half full half empty. SCG had large large gaps in seats :P

Posted by Warm_Coffee on (January 3, 2013, 19:58 GMT)

@corzaNZ: lolz What kind of fightback is that? almost running out of wickets and still no where close to getting a lead good luck! :P

Posted by Erebus26 on (January 3, 2013, 19:46 GMT)

I hope Brownlie gets his ton tomorrow - the way he took the fight to the Saffer bowling attack was admirable although he did ride his luck at times. I thought after a good debut series in Oz he'd gone off the boil but he's put in a good reminder to the selectors. I thought Baz played well too and seemed determined to rein his natural instincts. He's took a lot of stick for the fall out resulting from the Ross Taylor affair but the NZ cricketing public need to get behind their skipper. Question marks remain over Guptill - I've said before he's got great talent but looks vulnerable against good fast bowling. Might become another Roger Twose imo - a good limited overs player but not cut out for test cricket. With Brownlie scoring well in the second innings Daniel Flynn's chances could be running out too. Nice to see the Phantom chipping in with a couple of wickets when the Saffers batted.

Posted by nicevans on (January 3, 2013, 19:34 GMT)

@Boxer 44. I dont think west indies are 4th at all. Pakistan could beat anyone on their day, including south africa. Infact, if they had all their bowling talent available they could easily be no. 1, of course that will never happen now. Apart from south africa and perhaps pakistan and australia, all the other sides can beat each other with home advantage. An example is the up coming NZ /england series, no.2 vs no.8, where a full strength NZ side could win that series if they play well.NZ could also beat WI at home - home advantage is huge.

Posted by James.Alexander246 on (January 3, 2013, 19:33 GMT)

Dean Brownlie is class, hes got a good future a head of him for new zealand

Posted by kc69 on (January 3, 2013, 19:21 GMT)

Well thats the spirit.I always said its not win or loss that matters its the fight that has it all.

Posted by Fahiem25 on (January 3, 2013, 19:10 GMT)

if you forget the New Zealand first innings then this Test would be perfectlty poised.

Posted by Fahiem25 on (January 3, 2013, 19:06 GMT)

@Warm_Coffee, I was at Newlands today it was packed and the atmosphere was amazing, only the members stand was empty. Please stop pulling things out of the air.

Posted by corzaNZ on (January 3, 2013, 18:57 GMT)

@Warm_Coffee your back, why arent you talking about Bangaladesh? anyway its good to see a bit of fight from the blackcaps, hopefully brownlie can kick on and get a maiden ton and watling can battle away with him to make SA hopefully bat again but after these 2 im not expecting much from franklin and the rest

Posted by nicevans on (January 3, 2013, 18:35 GMT)

@Boxer 44. I dont think west indies are 4th at all. Pakistan could beat anyone on their day, including south africa. Infact, if they had all their bowling talent available they could easily be no. 1, of course that will never happen now. Apart from south africa and perhaps pakistan and australia, all the other sides can beat each other with home advantage. An example is the up coming NZ /england series, no.2 vs no.8, where a full strength NZ side could win that series if they play well.NZ could also beat WI at home - home advantage is huge.

Posted by mikey76 on (January 3, 2013, 17:47 GMT)

A shame NZ cant put up more of a fight. They then move on to England and James Anderson swinging it around corners over there. I think with Taylor and Ryder and then Vettori at 8 the kiwis have the makings of a decent side. If they can set SA 100 it will at least restore some pride and give them a bit of confidence for the next test.

Posted by Warm_Coffee on (January 3, 2013, 16:59 GMT)

Not much crowd either in Newlands or Sydney today :)

Posted by Last_ride on (January 3, 2013, 16:50 GMT)

@boxer44 as s Saffer fan i completely agree about West Indies. They are easily are the 4th best team. They will beat Pakistan at home easily. On the other hand nice to see a bit of fight from Nz. Also its a pity that a full strength Nz isnt here Not like it would have made any difference. But it would be a bit closer. I think Nz have a big chance at beating England.In Newzealand that is.

Posted by   on (January 3, 2013, 16:48 GMT)

Good on you Dean Brownlie-a Perth boy.

Posted by TommytuckerSaffa on (January 3, 2013, 16:45 GMT)

Good fight by the kiwis, good to see. I reckon Brownlie will get his Ton and richly deserved.

Why is Elgar in the team, I have never seen an SA batsman look so uncomfortable and nervous as dean elgar - he looks like a walking wicket!!!

Why didnt Smith review Vernons LBW shout, totally plumb and you could hear Vernon say there was no bat in it but smith decided otherwise.....

Posted by SurlyCynic on (January 3, 2013, 16:16 GMT)

As an SA supporter I'm glad to see NZ show a bit of fight and take the game into a 3rd day. Sure there were some dropped catches, but in the 1st innings every chance took an edge and was caught, this innings there were play-and-misses and dropped catches. It happens in cricket, but 2 day tests don't do the game any favours and NZ usually put in more effort than they did yesterday.

And B Mac toughed it out at the start of the innings without trying to hit every ball for 4 so a big improvement from him as an opener.

Posted by boxer44 on (January 3, 2013, 16:10 GMT)

Its hard to sell test cricket to the ignorant when the last two test matches has been SL vs AUS and NZ vs SA . NZ couldnt even bat out 20 overs in the first innings and at a decent PP score in T20. Only teams deserving of playing Eng, Aus, and SA in test is themselves. The other test playing countries should just play amongst themselves. I am West Indies fan to de bone, and believe that there are the fourth best test team but couldnt beat any of the two but will beat Eng in the right conditions(not cold weather). Test still is the best!!! C'mon NZ show your fighting spirit we all know you have.

Posted by M-S-R on (January 3, 2013, 14:54 GMT)

...had it been BD - all out for 45 in a test match- the sky would fall / (cricket) world would stop....!!!

Posted by   on (January 3, 2013, 13:52 GMT)

Vinay Kolhatkar There are many batsmen in SA who are better than Elgar. The logic is to develop somebody really young for the future while Kallis is still around. It's not like we need another good batsmen at 7. Just look at how De Villiers gave his wicket away to push run rate, that shows how there is no need for a 7th batsmen against NZ at the moment, the real need is to develop someone for the future.

Posted by sonicattack on (January 3, 2013, 12:34 GMT)

Ridiculous amount of time that the third umpire has just spent looking at for a possible inside edge from Williamson off Philander - umpires should not be holding up play for so long!

Posted by   on (January 3, 2013, 11:33 GMT)

Why isn't Albie Morkel (first class batting avg 45) batting at 7 instead of Dean Elgar? Albie can also bowl seam and be the fifth (or sixth if you count Kallis) bowler.

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David Hopps David Hopps joined ESPNcricinfo as UK editor early in 2012. For the previous 20 years he was a senior cricket writer for the Guardian and covered England extensively during that time in all Test-playing nations. He also covered four Olympic Games and has written several cricket books, including collections of cricket quotations. He has been an avid amateur cricketer since he was 12, and so knows the pain of repeated failure only too well. The pile of untouched novels he plans to read, but rarely gets around to, is now almost touching the ceiling. He divides his time between the ESPNcricinfo office in Hammersmith and his beloved Yorkshire.
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