CENTURION: Kagiso Rabada’s 13th career five-for helped rescue the Proteas from a disappointing batting display to come back and complete victory by 87 runs inside three days of the first Betway Test against the West Indies at SuperSport Park in Centurion on Thursday.
The fast bowler claimed a stellar six for 50 in 15 overs to blow away the tourists for 159 as they chased a very gettable 247 that was set up by an outstanding bowling display of their own that skittled the hosts for 116.
Despite the valiant efforts of Jermaine Blackwood (79 off 93 balls, 12 fours, 1 six), the islanders fell short thanks to a wonderful showing by South African spearhead Rabada. He was aided well by Marco Jansen (2/33), Gerald Coetzee (1/20) and Anrich Nortje (1/48).
Their efforts put the home side 1-0 up in the two-match series, with match two to follow in Johannesburg starting next Wednesday.
Even though the Proteas were victorious, the batting unit were left with plenty to ponder after another meltdown that saw them last only 28 overs in their second innings. Kemar Roach was the chief destroyer for the West Indians as he bagged five for 47. Only Player of the Match Aiden Markram offered any resistance with his top-score of 47 to go with his first-innings 115.
South Africa resumed the third morning already in trouble on 49 for four and within the first eight runs they lost another key wicket in Heinrich Klaasen for five. Markram was next to go, followed by Jansen (6) and Senuran Muthusamy (4) leaving the total on 80 for eight.
Coetzee came in an hit out with a quick-fire 20 that at least lifted them past 100, before seamer Roach mopped up the last two wickets for his own 12th career five-for. Alzarri Joseph (2/30), Jason Holder (2/7) and Shannon Gabriel (1/26) were also amongst the wickets.
The visitors lost a clutter of wickets early on as they sunk to 33 for five, before Blackwood and Joshua Da Silva (17) gave them a glimmer of hope with a 58-run sixth-wicket stand. But once that was ended by Rabada, the rest of the wickets fell quickly giving the hosts the advantage after the first match of the series.
Proteas Test squad against West Indies
Temba Bavuma (captain, DP World Lions), Gerald Coetzee (ITEC Knights), Tony de Zorzi (Six Gun Grill Western Province), Dean Elgar (Momentum Multiply Titans), Simon Harmer (Momentum Multiply Titans), Marco Jansen (Dafabet Warriors), Heinrich Klaasen (Momentum Multiply Titans), Keshav Maharaj (Hollywoodbets Dolphins), Aiden Markram (Momentum Multiply Titans), Wiaan Mulder (DP World Lions), Senuran Muthusamy (North West Dragons), Anrich Nortje (Dafabet Warriors), Keegan Petersen (Hollywoodbets Dolphins), Kagiso Rabada (DP World Lions), Ryan Rickelton (DP World Lions).
South Africa Betway Test Series against West Indies
28 February – 04 March at 10:00
South Africa beat West Indies by 87 runs - SuperSport Park, Centurion
08 – 12 March at 10:00
South Africa vs West Indies – DP World Wanderers Stadium, Johannesburg
[Submitted by Kevin Rademeyer]