Half-centuries by Dean Elgar and Quinton de Kock spearheaded the Proteas’ fightback as they reached 218-5 at stumps on the first day of the second and final Test match against West Indies.
Elgar’s gritty 77 off 237 balls (8x4s) saw the tourists through a rough start, following the fall of early wickets. They suffered the losses of Aiden Markram (0 off 3) and Keegan Petersen (7 off 25) within the first hour of the match, leaving them on 35-2 at the drinks break (14 overs).
By lunch, Elgar was forced to look on as he lost Rassie van der Dussen, who was clean bowled by Kemar Roach (1-33) for four, but new kid-on-the-Test-cricket-block Kyle Verreynne (27 off 89), was the perfect first mate to his captain.
They shared an 87-run stand for the fourth wicket to give stability to the South African innings. Their partnership was disturbed by the fall of Verreynne’s wicket just before tea thanks to Shannon Gabriel, who was the pick of the home team’s bowlers, closing the day with 2-47.
Other wicket contributions came by way of Kyle Mayers (1-24) and Jayden Seales (1-28).
De Kock then entered the fray, and built another important partnership with Elgar. They shared a 79-run, fifth-wicket stand off 169 balls before the skipper’s dismissal in the last hour of play at the hands of Mayers.
The South African wicketkeeper was then joined by Wiaan Mulder, adding 15 more runs to the scorecard before stumps was called. They are both unbeaten on 59 and two, respectively.
South Africa is 1-0 up in this two-match series.
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