The first test of the three match series started on Friday, February 1st, Graeme Smith’s 32nd birthday. It also marked the 100th time that ‘Biff’ had captained a test team, (99 SA, 1 world XI) what a remarkable achievement!
Other captains noted for their longevity in the job include Border (93), Fleming (80), Ponting (77), Lloyd (74)
Smith won the toss and decided to bat, it’s never easy on the first day up at The Wanderers, Protea’s wickets fell at regular intervals but I was buoyed by a comment from Andrew Samson that an average first innings score up there was ‘only’ 260. Average is rarely good enough but I was reasonably satisfied with our 253 at the end of the day.
Who could possibly have predicted yesterday morning’s carnage Pakistan 49 all out! Just slightly better than NZ’s 45 last month and Oz’s 47 in Cape Town (Nov 2011.)
S.A. ended the day on 207/3, a lead of 411.
A bit more batting practice for our middle order today, improve those averages, get some time at the crease, build confidences where necessary and then unleash Steyn, Philander, Morkel and (perhaps) Kallis.
Play resumes at 10:30 our time (08:30gmt)