NZ v SA 3rd Test, Day 2 Review: Quinton de Kock drives South Africa to 314

Quinton de Kock of South Africa
Quinton de Kock of South Africa. (Photo by FIONA GOODALL/AFP/Getty Images)
Unmesh Arun Phule

Freelancer Writer

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South Africa ended Day 1 on 123 for 4 after rain played spoilsport for the hosts. As many as 49 overs were lost on the opening day as the second day also witnessed some more rain. Things resumed with Faf du Plessis and Temba Bavuma trying to get South Africa out of the trouble they found themselves in. Bavuma, however, toe edged one to the first slip as his resistance was brought to an end by Matt Henry.

In came Quinton de Kock, he was not fully fit before the game but decided to risk it for his country. New Zealand looked on the verge of wrapping up the South African innings but little they knew that an injured de Kock is as dangerous as the fully fit one. The South African captain on one end was blocking his way out while de Kock was hitting his way out. The South African wicketkeeper scored 26 runs out of 28 balls he faced from Henry.

The pulls, the cuts, the drives you name it, Quinton played each and every shot in the book. While Faf on the other end was still busy crawling his way to the fifty. The captain’s resistance though was brought to an end by some fantastic fielding.

Tom Latham at short leg improvised and improvised well to get the South African captain out. Faf du Plessis was trying to sweep the ball and Latham noticing this went a few steps to his right even before the ball hit the bat. This gave him a head start and the rest of the work was done by his reflexes.

Quinton de Kock, however, was unfazed by his captain’s dismissal. The pitch was slow but that did not matter to the number seven batter as he was executing his shots with utmost ease. Wickets kept tumbling at the other end but de Kock kept going. He scored a magnificent 90 of just 118 deliveries on a bowler friendly pitch.

Matt Henry got rid of Vernon Philander as the batter reached 1000 runs in Tests. Philander was Henry’s fourth scalp and was set for a five-for. Kagiso Rabada came in and played a quickfire 34 run inning as he and de Kock added another 45 runs before de Kock was trapped in front of the wickets by Wagner who also snatched the wicket of Kagiso Rabada and Keshav Maharaj to deny Matt Henry a five-for.

The South African inning came to an end with the score of 314 on a pitch that has a little help for the batters. New Zealand, however, came out to bat with a game plan. South African bowlers missed the outside edge many times as they were bowling extremely well during the first hour of the NZ innings.

The next hour saw some loose deliveries which were rightly put away majorly by Tom Latham while Jeet Raval was seen holding back. The Blackcaps ended the day on a high as the light was offered to them. Both the openers still in the game as they finished the day with 67 on board. Latham scoring majority of the runs as he is unbeaten on 42 while Raval is also intact with 25 to his name.

New Zealand will be hoping for a full day’s play on Day Three while South Africa will look to take advantage of the pitch.

Brief Score:

South Africa – 314/10 89.2 Overs (de Kock 90, du Plessis 53, Matt Henry 4/93, Wagner 3/104)

New Zealand – 67/0 25.3 Overs (Latham 42, Raval 25)