Ricochet News

Maharaj magic spins Proteas to victory over Black Caps, lead Test Series 1-0

BY MARC JACOBSON - MARCH 20, 2017
Maharaj magic spins Proteas to victory over Black Caps, lead Test Series 1-0

With approximately two days to spare and three innings’ witnessed in one day, the Proteas eased to an 8-wicket victory over the Black Caps at the Basin Reserve in Wellington early on Saturday morning (SA time).

After taking a 91-run lead early on in the day with Vernon Philander scoring an unbeaten 37 and Morne Morkel making 40, New Zealand had a riveting task on their hands to not just overtake that 91, but climb to project a stern lead themselves.

It wasn’t to be as Proteas’ Test spinner, Keshav Maharaj absolutely flummoxed the Black Caps when he broke the finicky 65-run sixth-wicket partnership between Jeet Raval and BJ Watling.

At the point when the partnership shot off, New Zealand were 90/5 and Maharaj had already three of those wickets under his belt, but continued his onslaught when he broke the partnership in dismissing Raval for 80 and two more – including Watling as the final wicket for 29.

Maharaj showed exemplary figures of 6/40, as he weighted down in restricting New Zealand to just 171 all out – taking a mere 80-run lead, meaning the Proteas needed just 81 for victory. In this restriction, an astonishing eight of New Zealand’s 11 batters scored only single-digit scores.

Morkel also bowled well for the Proteas, taking 3/50 figures. Maharaj showed fine match figures of 8/87.

Exhorting to their own self-proclaimed confidence, the Proteas eased to this target with the score of 83/2, with Hashim Amla and JP Duminy finishing on the crease, scoring 38 and 15 not out respectively.

South Africa now leads the three-Test match series 1-0, with one more to come – starting on Saturday 25th March in Hamilton.

Image: Keshav Maharaj getting acknowledged by his teammates after a wicket.