Proteas in England
Perfect practice for Proteas
AB de Villiers (Gallo Images)
Derby - The Proteas’ rearranged batting order made good use of their opportunity on day one of the two-day tour match against Derbyshire County Cricket Club on Friday. Graeme Smith and Jacques Kallis did not feature at the top of the order, giving the rest of the batsmen valuable time in the middle.
Two big partnerships of more than 150 runs each gave the Proteas a good score of above 300, a positive result for Gary Kirsten and Co.
A belligerent attack from Faf du Plessis (68) and Albie Morkel (49) at the back end of the innings allowed Smith to close the innings on 365, giving the bowlers 22 overs at the opposition. The pair put together 123 for the fifth wicket, also an encouraging sign with the ICC World T20 on the horizon.
AB de Villiers top-scored with 97 off 96 balls and put away 16 fours and two sixes before retiring inches away from a century. De Villiers and JP Duminy (69) shared 157 runs for the third wicket, at a healthy rate of more than five runs to the over.
Earlier, Hashim Amla was bowled for a speedy 42 runs off 49 balls, after opening the innings with Jacques Rudolph who lasted only 16 balls for 15 runs.
Vernon Philander took the only wicket of the day for the Proteas, Matt Lineker caught behind by Thami Tsolekile with the gloves for 14. Morne Morkel, Lonwabo Tsotsobe, Imran Tahir and Robin Peterson were the other bowlers used in the final session.
The hosts were 75 for one at stumps, with Australian International, Usman Khawaja on 36 and KwaZulu-Natal’s Wayne Madsen on 20.
The South African players wore black armbands in honour of Northerns Cricket Union CEO, Elise Lombard who passed away on Thursday.