SA in West Indies

AB: All still to play for

2010-06-28 12:47
AB de Villiers (AP)
Barbados - AB de Villiers and Sulieman Benn, two key performers so far, believe the third and final Test between West Indies and South Africa is far from over.

De Villiers hit 73 and shared in a record sixth-wicket stand with Ashwell Prince as South Africa, replying to West Indies' first innings total of 231, reached 285 for six when stumps were drawn on Sunday's second day at Kensington Oval.

"West Indies are putting up a challenge," said de Villiers. "They are playing some very good cricket, especially their bowling in this match.

"They came out, and fought really hard right up until the close of play. Benn bowled unbelievably well, and had us in trouble for most of the day.

"But we are a fairy well-balanced Test side, and we recovered well. It's going to be a tough Test match over the next few days, and it is fairly evenly-balanced at the moment. We will have to come out and fight really hard for a win."

Benn has been the most successful West Indies bowler with four wickets for 59 runs from 31 overs, and is confident that West Indies could still make a claim for victory, though the decks are heavily stacked against them.

"You always have to think that way," he said. "One down in a series, you have to think that you could get a result out of it in your favour. You can't just say die and go with your tail between your legs. We have to try hard.

"We have to be positive in what we are doing. Our second innings is crucial to our game plan, and we have to bat properly."

De Villiers spent just over four hours at the crease, and struck just a half-dozen boundaries from 189 balls, which he indicated was testimony that batting on a slowish pitch was challenging.

"It was really tough stuff working out there (on Sunday)," he said. "I think Ashwell [Prince], and I played really well to give us a lead of 50-odd.

"It's a shame I lost my wicket towards the end of the day. I would have loved to be there to bat when we resume (on Monday).

"That's Test cricket for you. You've got to toil, and work hard for your runs."

"I love working hard for my runs. I love playing Test cricket. You don't want to get it any other way.

"I think I faced 180-odd balls for my 70, and that's just proper Test cricket, and I really enjoyed every second of it. It's just a pity I could not go on to reach a hundred."

Benn acknowledged West Indies had allowed South Africa to wriggle free, after the visitors had slipped to 145 for five.

"De Villiers and Prince put on a 100-run partnership, when five wickets were down, but the pitch kind of got better for batting as the innings progressed," he said. "We tried our best, but it just didn't happen at that time."

De Villiers twice benefitted from West Indies captain Chris Gayle's decision not to challenge umpiring decisions, but both he and Benn were philosophical about it.

Benn summed it up in this way: "It's a touch and go situation. Either it would go in your favour, or it won't. That is just something that happens. We still have to get on with the job."


What To Read Next


Read News24’s Comments Policy publishes all comments posted on articles provided that they adhere to our Comments Policy. Should you wish to report a comment for editorial review, please do so by clicking the 'Report Comment' button to the right of each comment.

Comment on this story
1 comment
Comments have been closed for this article.
Live Video Streaming
Video Highlights
Sport Talk

Love 2 Meet
English Premiership flutter

Take Sport24's "expert" tips at your peril...

Sport24 on Twitter

Follow Sport24 news on Twitter


The 2017/18 Absa Premiership season is under way. Can Bidvest Wits defend their title? Will Soweto giants Kaizer Chiefs or Orlando Pirates emerge victorious? Or will the bookies' favourites, Mamelodi Sundowns, taste success for a record eighth time? Stay glued to Sport24 to find out!

Latest blogs

The main reason for the current state of shambles that exists in the Proteas' set-up is:

Twitter Follow Sport24 on Twitter

Facebook "Like" Sport24's Facebook page

WIN Enter and win with Sport24!

BlackBerry Stay in the loop on your BlackBerry

RSS Feeds Sport news delivered really simply.

There are new stories on the homepage. Click here to see them.