Dunedin - Jacques Rudolph's first century for South Africa since his return to the national team after a self-imposed five year exile in England will cost him one of the most expensive drinks of his life - but it is a price he is only too happy to pay.
Rudolph said after his unbeaten 105 on the fourth day of the first test against New Zealand in Dunedin that he "would do anything to stay in this team" but he owed his success to the intervention of batting partner Jacques Kallis when he had reached just 10.
An lbw appeal by seamer Doug Bracewell was upheld by umpire Aleem Dar but overturned on appeal when replays showed the ball to have pitched fractionally outside leg stump.
"I thought I was stone dead. You know when you're out and I thought I was gone," admitted Rudolph. "I told Jacques that I wasn't going to ask for the referral and started to walk off, but he said 'hang on, maybe it was pitching outside leg stump'," Rudolph said.
"But I was sure and said it would be a waste of a referral. But Jacques insisted, so I asked for it. I was very, very pleasantly surprised when the decision came back," Rudolph admitted.
A few overs later Kallis was dismissed but made sure Rudolph remembered his good turn: "If you get a hundred then I want a double (Johnnie Walker) Blue Label," Kallis said as he walked off.
One of the most expensive whiskies in the world conventionally sells for around R200 per shot at hotel prices. So the next time he buys Kallis a post-match drink he's in for around R400.
"No problem. I'll buy him a bottle if he wants," Rudolph laughed.