Sri Lanka in SA

Smith: Vernon makes job easier

2011-12-19 14:20
Graeme Smith (File)

Cape Town - Proteas captain Graeme Smith said seamer Vernon Philander was self-motivated and did not require any extra prodding from his captain.

GALLERY: 2011 in review

"Vernon understands his own skills which makes my job easier," Smith said.

Philander was named Man of the Match on Saturday for his 10 wickets in the opening Test between South Africa and Sri Lanka at SuperSport Park in Centurion, which the hosts won by an innings and 81 runs.

"The wickets had some good juice in them so it was about Vern not changing too much and to keep working on those skills.

"So for me it's just about him keeping it simple and the motivation is there."

Smith said every player hoped for a start like that in international cricket and it was there to be enjoyed but warned of a challenge it gave to a player.

"I think he's played enough cricket and had enough ups and downs in his career to know it's not always going to be easy," Smith said.

"There will be different surfaces around the world that will challenge him.

"I would love him to keep on bowling as he is, but I think he knows there are tougher times around the corner."

Philander's 5/53 in the first innings and 5/49 in the second made him the first South African to take four five-wicket hauls in his first three Test matches and only the fourth bowler in history to achieve the feat.

Rodney Hogg for Australia, who debuted against England in 1978, took five five-wicket hauls while Thomas Richardson (England in 1893) and Charles Turner (Australia in 1887) both took four.

The 26-year-old from Bellville in Cape Town, made his debut against Australia at Newlands in November where he took 5/15 with Australia famously all out for 47, and 5/70 in the tourists' second innings the Wanderers.

South Africa next play Sri Lanka in the second Test at Kingsmead in Durban on December 26.

Most wickets after three tests:

Name Team Balls Runs Wkts Avg RPO BB 5I
ND Hirwani Ind 983 432 31 13.93 2.63 8-61 3
CTB Turner Aus 1071 248 29 8.55 1.38 7-43 4
RM Hogg Aus 978 297 27 11.00 1.82 6-74 5
HV Hordern Aus 899 470 26 18.07 3.13 7-90 3
BAW Mendis SL 979 478 26 18.38 2.92 6-117 2
VD Philander SA 523 297 24 12.37 3.40 5-15 4
AV Bedser Eng 866 298 24 12.41 2.06 7-49 2
FS Trueman Eng 622 338 24 14.08 3.26 8-31 1
JJ Ferris Aus 987 346 24 14.41 2.10 5-71 2
AE Hall SA 1194 415 23 18.04 2.08 7-63 2
AL Valentine WI 1992 514 23 22.34 1.54 8-104 1
T Richardson Eng 1116 521 23 22.65 2.80 5-49 4

Most five wicket hauls in first three Tests:

5 - RM Hogg (Aus) v England 1978/79 (Brisbane)
v England 1978/79 (Perth)
v England 1978/79 (Melbourne)
4 - CTB Turner (Aus) v England 1886/87 (Sydney)
v England 1886/87 (Sydney)
v England 1887/88 (Sydney)
4 - T Richardson (Eng)  v Australia 1893 (Manchester)
v Australia 1893  (Sydney)
v Australia 1894/95 (Melbourne)
4 - VD Philander (SA) v Australia 2011/12 (Cape Town)
v Australia 2011/12  (Johannesburg)
v Sri Lanka 2011/12 (Centurion)



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