Kagiso Rabada and Lungi Ngidi fire warning to Australia by shaking CA XI up
"They are different. That is their strength", South Africa's bowling coach Charl Langeveldt can't wait for the series-opener in Brisbane
South Africans 347 (Elgar 109, Verreynne 80, Kuhnemann 4-78) and 304 for 8 dec (van der Dussen 95, Verreynne 80, Edwards 3-45) drew with CA XI 226 (Kellaway 105*, Doran 78, Coetzee 3-36) and 184 for 6 (Handscomb 48, Wyllie 44, Rabada 2-22)
South Africa pace duo Kagiso Rabada and Lungi Ngidi fired a warning shot to Australia ahead of the first Test by taking early wickets against a Cricket Australia XI top order for the second time in their tour warm-up match.
They had set CA XI 426 runs to win at Allan Border Field on the final day, but both sides agreed on an early finish just before tea with the hosts 184 for 6 in their second innings.
South Africa play Australia in the first match of a three-Test series at the Gabba from December 17, and derived plenty from this four-day hit-out. One thing was clear: Australia will not have it as easy as they did against West Indies when the top order goes out to bat.
Rabada has 257 Test wickets, and was at his lethal best in the second innings, when he claimed two early victims. Ngidi, who took three early wickets in the first innings, chimed in to have the CA XI 34 for 3.
Proteas bowling coach Charl Langeveldt said he couldn't wait to unleash the pair at the Gabba.
"KG has had a brilliant season for us so far. He bowled well," Langeveldt said. "Lungi has always been good and can swing the ball. Sometimes the conditions overhead in Brisbane [means] it does swing.
"In Brisbane, they also leave a lot of grass on the wicket to start the game off, so that plays in to our favour day one or day two. I think our lengths was the key. We were a lot fuller. If you bowl short it looks good but is not going to get you the rewards."
It is the way the duo complement each other with different styles that Langeveldt said was the key.
"Lungi is a lot more controlled, where KG is a genuine wicket taker," he said. "Rabada doesn't deliver as high as Ngidi. Ngidi has got a better wrist position. They are different. That is their strength."
Captain Dean Elgar (109) found form in the first innings, alongside wicketkeeper Kyle Verreynne (80). In the visitors' second outing, it was the turn of Rassie van der Dussen (95) and Theunis de Bruyn (88) to make some pre-Test runs.
Throw in the return of middle-order stalwart Temba Bavuma in the second innings from an elbow injury that stopped him batting in the first, and it was an almost perfect preparation for South Africa.
CA XI skipper Peter Handscomb (48 retired out) and Teague Wyllie (44) both made runs on the final day.
The display of 20-year-old left-hander Campbell Kellaway was the highlight for the future of Australian cricket. He appeared as comfortable as a seasoned veteran in his unbeaten 109 in the first innings, and was going along nicely at 34 not out when the match ended.