South Africa dominated the first day of the second Castle Lager test match against Pakistan at PPC Newlands in Cape Town on Thursday after Faf du Plessis had won the toss and asked Pakistan to bat first.
The visitors were bowled out for 177 at tea time with right-arm fast bowling sensation Duanne Olivier claiming 4-48, aided by South Africa’s premier fast bowler Dale Steyn, who ended with 3-48. Steyn though is hoping the bowlers can put their feet up.
“Days two and three at Newlands is best known for the best batting days and hopefully we can bat big tomorrow,” said Steyn after the first day’s play.
“I would love a boring day! We did a lot of work up at Centurion during the first test, I mean i ran about 37km’s, so I would just love a day where I can just sit with my feet up,” added Steyn.
South Africa reached the close of play on 123 for two, a first innings deficit of just 54 but will feel a little disappointed with the loss of Aiden Markram with the final ball of the day to a delivery from Shan Masood (1-0-4-1) that kept extremely low. Markram, who opened the batting with Dean Elgar (20), gave the hosts a good start with an opening stand of 56.
“It’s a pity we lost Aiden there but i mean that was the ball of the day, it was a good one,” said Steyn.
Markram looked fluent throughout his innings, striking 14 boundaries and a six before being bowled by the low-keeping delivery from Masood for 78.
“When someone’s batting like that it lifts the changeroom and it feels like there is lots of runs to be made here,” stated Steyn.
Hashim Amla will resume the second day unbeaten on 24 and will be joined by his captain Du Plessis. The Proteas’ skipper endured a rare ‘pair’ at Supersport Park and will be hoping to cash-in on the start that Elgar, Markram and Amla have given the side.
Du Plessis will be keen to improve his personal record against Pakistan as well as at Newlands in the longest format of the game. The skipper has scored 506 runs in 14 knocks at an average of only 36,14 while his stats against Pakistan are nothing to write home about.
In nine innings against Pakistan, Du Plessis has only scored 140 runs at an average of just 17.5 with a top score of just 41, something Du Plessis would want to improve on drastically.
Play begins at 10:30 local time.