De Villiers‚ Du Plessis dig SA out of trouble

De Villiers‚ Du Plessis dig SA out of trouble


AB de Villiers and Faf du Plessis dug South Africa out of trouble in the opening session of their test series against India at Newlands in Cape Town on Friday.

South Africa were 107/3 at lunch. De Villiers was 59 not out with Du Plessis unbeaten on 37 in a stand of 95.

Du Plessis won the toss and chose to bat‚ and his team shambled to 12/3 inside the first five overs with the top order of Dean Elgar‚ Aiden Markram and Hashim Amla all dismissed.

The first two deliveries of the match‚ bowled by Bhuvneshwar Kumar‚ sailed past Elgar’s legs.

But the third seamed away from the left-hander‚ who nicked it and was caught behind.

Kumar trapped Markram in front with an inswinger in his next over‚ and in the medium pacer’s following over Amla steered an edge to the wicketkeeper.

The responsive pitch was part of the reason for Kumar’s success‚ but not as much as his consistently accurate bowling.

India stayed on top until the ninth over‚ when De Villiers slashed Kumar over the slip cordon for four and crashed his next delivery through point for another boundary.

By lunch‚ with De Villiers untamable and Du Plessis unflappable‚ South Africa had forged far closer to parity than they seemed destined to after the first five overs.

De Villiers faced 65 balls and hit 11 fours‚ and Du Plessis’s 67 balls were studded with seven boundaries.

Dale Steyn is playing his first test since November 2016‚ when he was injured while bowling against Australia at the WACA in Perth.

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