Hash’s deepening Durban hoodoo

2018-03-03 14:10
Hashim Amla (AP)

Cape Town - South Africa, up against it in midway through the first Test against Australia at Kingsmead, will clearly need some of their more seasoned figures to come to the fore dramatically in the unenviable fourth innings if they are to somehow get out of jail.

Hashim Amla is one such customer, and a batsman who knows local conditions better than most for whatever rear-guard action is required by the embattled Proteas.

But if the decorated stroke-player, who turns 35 later this month, does manage to come significantly to the fore when the host nation are finally made aware of their target - or the time they may have to scrap out for a stalemate - it will go against the personal statistical grain.

Amla, born and educated in Durban and then a Dolphins player for so long before he switched franchise allegiance to the Cape Cobras in 2013, stubbornly cannot find his otherwise legendary mojo at Kingsmead in Test whites.

It was his dismissal for a three-ball duck in the first innings, coming so soon after Aussie off-spinner Nathan Lyon had also snared Dean Elgar, that sent shockwaves through the fragile SA batting line-up on Friday, a situation from which they never recovered despite the admirable resistance of fellow heavyweight AB de Villiers.

That was Amla’s fourth KZN duck in a 194-innings Test career that has seen him suffer the fate only 11 times, but also meaning that more than a third of his noughts have now come at Kingsmead alone.

His latest failure there, in his 11th Durban Test, meant he has registered a total of only 351 runs at an average of below 20 (19.50) ... way down on his career average of 49 heading into the latest contest against the Baggy Greens.

Amla has played 18 innings in the format at Kingsmead, with just four half-centuries and a top score of 69 against modest West Indies in January 2008.

His one-day international career at the ground isn’t greatly better so far: 10 matches and 395 runs at 39.50, again some way below his stellar career average of 50.23 - though he does sport one century, against India.

Here is the complete list of Amla Test knocks at Kingsmead ... might there be a welcome, much bulkier addition after the current fixture is completed?

1 and 0 v England, December 2004

1 and 0 v India, December 2006

69 v West Indies, January 2008

0 and 43 v Australia, March 2009

2 and 6 v England, December 2009

33 and 16 v India, December 2010

54 and 51 v Sri Lanka, December 2011

3 v India, December 2013

7 and 12 v England, December 2015

53 v New Zealand, August 2016

0 v Australia (first inns), March 2018

*Follow our chief writer on Twitter: @RobHouwing

Read more on:    australia  |  proteas  |  hashim amla  |  durban  |  cricket

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