Howzit from Galle, Sri Lanka. It's been a long hard day for the SA team in the field on this, the first day of the first Test Match against Sri Lanka. It has not been one of our better bowling performances but the team has pulled it back OK and hopefully we can be more competitive as the game goes on.
I'm disappointed not to be playing after being picked in the squad of 12 but I am very happy for my roomie, Neil McKenzie who has been selected to play in his debut test match. Neil is a superstitious character at the best of times but after last night he has taken superstitiousness to a new level. After re-packing his bag on countless occasions and making sure the room was spotless, he proceeded to get in and out of bed 3 times before he was happy to turn the lights out. Why he does this we don't know; and I'm told he's improved in this area of his cricketing eccentricities.
Off the field, we haven't had much time to relax. We are currently staying at the beautiful Lighthouse Hotel and it's easy to forget that you're on a cricket tour with this type of surrounding. Its very much like a scene out of an idyllic movie set with palm trees all round and waves splashing up to the edge of the hotel and the restaurant overlooking the beach and sea.
My most hair-raising experience on tour thus far has been the tuk-tuk race we had between the Kallis/Boucher team and the McKenzie/Terbrugge duo. We were having dinner and watching rugby at the Colombo Cricket Cafe and decided to spice up the return trip home with a tuk-tuk race. The ride back included dicing with trains, dodging pedestrians and forcing on-coming traffic off the road. Thankfully we made it back alive; the winner being Boucher/Kallis by a short head as they goaded their driver more than we did.
On the playing front again, it has been a fairly frustrating experience but I was fortunate enough to have had a fairly good performance against Pakistan where I took 4 for 20 and helped us win the match and make the final. That on the other hand was a different story altogether, the conditions being very testing for the bowlers but still a wonderful experience playing in front of 50 000 cricket mad Lankans.
After a heavy rainfall on the day of our arrival, we all thought that the predictions of the "A" tourists of '98 would be true, saying we would be rained out 50 % of the time. Alas, since then we haven't seen a drop of rain, the only water being that dripping, no pouring off the players in the form of sweat or heavily chlorinated swimming pool water.
This being my first tour away with the big boys, it's been quite an eye-opening experience. Even though I might not be in a position to play that many games on tour, I'm sure I'll pick up many helpful tips about touring and playing on the sub-continent which hopefully will make me a much better cricketer for it.
This David Terbrugge signing off from beautiful Galle, Sri Lanka for CricInfo.