De Swardt, Von Berg lead proteas fightback in second test

You are currently viewing De Swardt, Von Berg lead proteas fightback in second test
  • Post published:February 13, 2024

An unbeaten 70-run partnership between Ruan de Swardt and Shaun von Berg saved the Proteas’ blushes as they recovered to 220-6 in the second Test against New Zealand in Hamilton.

After reaching his first-ever half-century at stumps on the first day of play, de Swardt and von Berg collaborated for 70 runs off 27 overs in Hamilton. Von Berg was at 34 on his Test debut.

The tourists, having won the toss, made a comeback; they were 64-3 after lunch and 150-6 early in the last session after crucial batsman David Bedingham was freakishly removed.

An undermatched South Africa has to win at Seddon Park to avoid becoming the first team in their nation to lose a Test series against New Zealand, having lost the first Test match by 281 runs in Mount Maunganui.

During a tough 135-ball knock, De Swardt, one of six Proteas debutants in the first Test, demonstrated to the specialist batsman how to keep his wicket intact.

After participating in 135 first-class matches, 37-year-old leg-spinner von Berg offered him support and an international opportunity.

Both of them stopped a mini-collapse before the tea break, which was prompted by Rachin Ravindra, who scored 3-33.

After hitting 240 in the opening Test, Ravindra demonstrated his versatility by dismissing Keegan Petersen for two and Zubayr Hamza for a laborious 20 from 99 balls.

The unfortunate Bedingham, on 39, had his leg-side flick hit the top of his shoe and fly to close-in fielder Will Young, but his left-arm spin explained it.

In the second over, South Africa got off to a terrible start when their temporary opener Clyde Fortuin was out for nought on the first ball, which was smartly collected in the gully by wicketkeeper Glenn Phillips off Matt Henry.

Before lunch, Raynard van Tonder was out for 32 after failing to get on top of a short delivery from Neil Wagner, and pace bowler Will O’Rourke took his first wicket on his debut by trapping skipper Neil Brand leg before wicket for 25.

By bringing in von Berg and bringing back off-spinner Dane Piedt for his first Test in four years, South Africa strengthened their spinning lineup.

Seafarer Duanne Olivier and opener Edward Moore were replaced by them.

O’Rourke, 22, came in for New Zealand in lieu of Kyle Jamieson, who had suffered a back injury in the first Test.

Spinner Mitchell Santner was replaced by veteran seamer Wagner, and batsman Daryl Mitchell was substituted by Young after he was ruled out with a foot injury.

Photo by Proteas Mens Twitter Page