Dean Elgar unimpressed at how Proteas’ batting order folded
South Africa may still have the upper hand in the second Test against Sri Lanka but their first innings hero Dean Elgar lamented the team's batting collapse here on Monday.
The hosts lost their last nine wickets for the addition of just 84 runs to be all out for 302.
Ordinarily that would allow the opposition back into the contest but so poor was the Sri Lankan first innings effort of 157 that they still have a mountain to climb to take the game deep into day four.
Still‚ South Africa missed the opportunity to put the game completely out of the tourists’ reach.
Elgar was a little unimpressed with the way the team folded‚ missing the opportunity to bat themselves out of sight and thus securing the series victory.
“Yip‚ it was probably a sub-par total after that very good partnership. In South Africa you have to acknowledge the nature of the pitches – it’s quite hard to bat here‚” said the left-handed opener who registered his 13th Test ton.
After Elgar and Rassie van der Dussen put on 184 for the second wicket – a record for this ground for that wicket – the South African middle and lower order gave way.
There was no sting in their tail either.
Elgar stressed the importance of having set batsmen at the crease as they are more attuned to the demands of the exaggerated movement through the air and off the deck.
“There’s a lot of seam movement and some good bounce‚ which you expect here at the Wanderers‚” Elgar reminded.
“Perhaps we were guilty of not being more disciplined and sticking to our gameplans longer.
“It's important on these types of pitches to have batters in because it is difficult for the new guys coming in and losing me and Rassie quickly obviously momentum shifted.”
To be fair‚ the tourists somehow drew inspiration from the first drinks break on day two as they quickly set about changing the course of the South African innings.
Dasun Shanaka bowled with newfound verve and vigour from the Corlett Drive End‚ while Vishwa Fernando found a more teasing line and length from the other end.
Fernando bagged his first five-wicket haul at this level finishing with 5/101.
“You have to give them credit‚ they put a lot of good balls in the right area just on off-stump and also the fourth stump line. They were very disciplined‚” said Elgar.
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