'Immaculate' Duminy reminds of his class

2017-01-13 07:00
JP Duminy (Gallo)

Johannesburg - On any other day, JP Duminy's 155 would have stolen headlines. 

It was a seriously good innings; one that was fluent from beginning to end as the classy left-hander showed a vast array of shots on his way to 19 boundaries as South Africa took control of the third Test against Sri Lanka in Johannesburg. 

The focus, of course, was on Hashim Amla in his 100th Test and when the former skipper followed that up with a century of his own, it was always going to be difficult to talk about anything else. 

Not that Duminy will care about the limelight. 

This is an innings that he was desperate for. 

Since his 141 in Perth against Australia back in November, Duminy has flirted with the No 4 position. 

His inconsistency has given an already vocal school of thought more ammunition in suggesting that his meager Test average of 32.6 (before this Test) was not worthy of a position of such importance. 

But while Amla battled his way back into form, Duminy played with a freedom that can only come from a batsman who feels in good nick. 

When the 100 partnership between the pair came up, Duminy was 62* while Amla was 25*.

"I think it took the pressure off the team," Amla said of Duminy's innings.

"For me, personally, I just tried to stay in my zone. Whether he was getting runs or not was immaterial to how I was going to play."

Amla was full of praise for the man he shared a 292-run stand with for the third-wicket. 

"I think JP, what we’ve noticed, is that when he’s on song he’s a beautiful player to watch," said Amla.

"His judgement is great, his timing is immaculate and it’s always a pleasure to bat with him.

"I think everybody is happy that he’s got 100. I think he’s finding that consistency and he’s doing really well." 

Duminy was out in the second last over of the day, but by then the damage had been done from a Sri Lankan perspective. 

With the return of AB de Villiers looming - sometime - Duminy has significantly distanced himself from being the guy who will have to make way. 

Read more on:    proteas  |  jp duminy  |  hashim amla  |  johannesburg  |  cricket

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