NZ v SA 3rd Test, Day 1 Review: Rain plays spoil sport as New Zealand bowl well

New Zealand and South Africa
A deserted ground after rain stopped play during day one of the Test match between New Zealand and South Africa at Seddon Park on March 25, 2017 in Hamilton, New Zealand. (Photo by Dave Rowland/Getty Images)
Unmesh Arun Phule

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New Zealand goes into the third Test with a lot of injury problems. South Africa, on the other hand, will go in with a lot of confidence from their win in the second Test. New Zealand were handed in a blow right before the final Test as Trent Boult could not recover from his previous injury.

This made way for the all-rounder Collin de Grandhomme. Hamilton pitch was supposed to be slow and low, the true nature of the pitch will be revealed on Day 3 or Day 4 of the Test. The first day, however, was quite interesting. A rain affected Day 1 saw New Zealand take an early advantage. Both the openers were sent back to the pavilion within the first three overs as rain sided with the South Africans.

The openers Dean Elgar and Theunis de Bruyn lost their wickets without troubling the scorer. Elgar played 12 delivers for his five runs as he was cleaned bowled by de Grandhomme as Theunis de Bruyn was caught by Latham off Matt Henry for a duck. Henry was bowling in a good rhythm and so was de Grandhomme as rain played spoilsport.

It poured down thrice in five hours breaking the rhythm of the bowlers. Hashim Amla took advantage of the same and scored a patient half-century. He batted well for his fifty hitting nine fours and playing 93 deliveries. Amla, however, seemed to have lost his concentration as he got his wickets disrupted by Colin de Grandhomme who was bowling extremely well.

South Africa were reduced for 64 for three and then 97 for four as they kept on losing wickets at regular intervals. Jean-Paul Duminy also could not apply himself as he was hunted down by Henry. JP Duminy scored mere 20 runs of 61 deliveries. Faf du Plessis and Temba Bavuma had to stabilize the innings a bit as the New Zealand bowlers were bowling extremely well.

The Proteas finished the day on 123 for 4 as du Plessis and Bavuma are still at the crease. All the damage on the day was done by Matt Henry and de Grandhomme as both of them were extremely economical and bowled well in tandem. Matt Henry bowled 10 overs and gave away just 25 runs picking up two wickets while Colin de Grandhomme bowled the most overs in the day that is 16 and gave away 43 runs for his two scalps.

Neil Wagner and Jeetan Patel went wicket-less on Day One but were economical. Faf du Plessis and Temba Bavuma finished the day with the scores of 33 and 13 respectively. Day Two will be very crucial as New Zealand will be hoping for no rain at all.

Brief Score:

South Africa – 123/4 41 overs (Amla 50, du Plessis 33, Henry 2/25, Grandhomme 2/43)