Will Proteas enforce follow on?

2017-01-14 07:05
Faf du Plessis (Getty)

Johannesburg – It may be a little premature at this stage, but South African captain Faf du Plessis could find himself with another tricky follow-on decision in the third Test against Sri Lanka at Wanderers.

In the second Test in Cape Town. Du Plessis opted against enforcing the follow-on despite having a first-innings lead of 282.

It obviously proved to be the right call, but with rain threatening in Johannesburg over the weekend and ahead of day three on Saturday, the skipper may be tempted to ask the visitors to bat again should he be presented that option.

Sri Lanka are currently 80/4 on what is looking an increasingly difficult wicket to bat on and they are still 346 runs behind the Proteas’ first innings score of 426.

Speaking after play on Friday, South Africa’s first innings hero JP Duminy said that such a decision would take the conditions into account.

“I thought in the last Test the conditions didn’t necessarily suit that style of play,” Duminy, who scored 155 in South Africa's first dig, said.

“We had an opportunity to seal the series so we wanted to shut Sri Lanka out completely and the way to do that was to bat again and bat big, and give ourselves a chance to bowl them out.

“At the end of the day we’ve just got to find ways to win a Test match. Who knows, if all goes well tomorrow we might have an opportunity to follow them on, but we’ll see as the game goes on.”

Duminy said that the wicket was a testing one for batsmen and that the plan with the ball had been to bowl a little fuller than usual.

“We were honest with ourselves in that first hour when we didn’t land it in the right area as consistently as we would have liked,” he said of South Africa’s new ball session on Friday, which saw Sri Lanka get to tea at 46/1.

“Coming back after tea, that was the best spell of bowling we have had today, and that’s something we will take forward to tomorrow.

“There is a lot in that pitch, so you just have to put it in a good area and not go searching for too much. That’s the conversation we have had in the team.”

Play is scheduled to start at 10:00 on Saturday morning despite day two having ended early due to bad light.

Read more on:    proteas  |  faf du plessis  |  cricket

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