South Africa prepared themselves to bat long, through rain disruptions, to make the most of New Zealand’s bungled use of the decision review system (DRS) on day one of the third Test in Hamilton yesterday.
“We’ve got a long way to go to get a good total,” Hashim Amla said after his 50 and an unbeaten 33 from Faf du Plessis helped the Proteas recover from a disastrous start on a rain-disrupted day in which only 41 overs were possible. From being 5-2 in the fourth over, South Africa were 123-4 at stumps, while New Zealand had blown their review opportunities.
“There is so much time left,” Amla said, with South Africa maintaining a win was still possible, despite rain forecast for the remaining four days. “We want to bat as long as we can in the first innings to get a really big score on the board to set the game up.”
They have the advantage of knowing New Zealand have no reviews left before the 80th over, which has already cost them the chance to remove Du Plessis.
Just 13 deliveries after using up their second review they were powerless to react when the umpires missed a faint edge that should have seen Du Plessis caught behind for 16.
New Zealand quick Matt Henry described the weather and faulty reviewing as “frustrating,” but said the hosts were still satisfied with their day’s work.
“We did well to get them four down. We didn’t get [the reviews] right,” Henry said. “It can be frustrating, but we get another chance later on.”
South Africa, starting the Test with an unbeatable 1-0 series lead, were two down in the fourth over after winning the toss and electing to bat.
It would have been 28-3 if not for the first New Zealand judgement error of the day. They decided not to review a rejected Neil Wagner LBW appeal against J.P. Duminy on 7 when the ball tracker technology signaled the ball would have hit the stumps.
Duminy went on to make 20 in a 59-run stand for the third wicket with Amla before being removed just before lunch.
Amla went soon after the break.
After New Zealand’s first review blunder they over-compensated by wasting two reviews on correctly called not-out decisions, which left them helpless to contest another decision after the 29th over.
The magnitude of the error became apparent minutes later when umpire Bruce Oxenford missed a faint edge from Du Plessis off the luckless Wagner that was taken by B.J. Watling behind the stumps.
AFP, DHARAMSALA, India
Steve Smith top-scored with 111 before Australia were bowled out for 300 in their first innings on the opening day of the decisive fourth Test against India yesterday.
Debutant left-arm leg-spinner Kuldeep Yadav took 4-68 to script a turnaround for India in Dharamsala, which is hosting its first-ever Test.
David Warner (56) and Matthew Wade (57) were the other batsmen to make useful contributions after Smith won the toss and elected to bat.
At stumps, India had faced one over, with Lokesh Rahul playing out six dot balls and Murali Vijay not out at the other end.
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