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    April 05, 2005

    South Africa crawl their way to a draw against West Indies

    South Africa did all the running in the game, right from day one, and they continued to remain under pressure on the final day too since they had to stave off defeat with eight wickets in hand. They did that, thanks to a docile pitch, some bizarre captaincy by Chanderpaul and hours of obdurate batting by Kallis and Gibbs.

    West Indies made a huge score of 543 thanks to double centuries from Hinds and Chanderpaul. Its not too often that two batsmen make double-centuries in the same innings. Some of the previous significant occasions were Ponsford and Bradman torturing England at the Oval, Hunte making 260 while Sobers making his first test century, a mere 365, and Mahanama and Jayasuriya torturing India, when Sri Lanka declared at 103759/6. The most recent instance, as far as I could find out was Atapattu and Sangakkara making tons of runs against Zimbabwe's schoolboy XI.

    In reply to that huge total, South Africa were shot out for 188 with West Indies' trio of seamers picking up three wickets each. Kallis' second innings century, his 21st test ton, took him past 7000 runs.

    South Africa scored at 2 runs per over in the entire test. West Indies scored at over 3.5. Its plain and obvious that there was nothing wrong with the pitch. Yes, play was lost due to the weather, but scoring at that kind of runrate is unacceptable in the modern era. South Africa must be made to apologize to all the spectators for the way they batted. Yet, Graeme Smith strangely feels that the batsmen batted with too much freedom. If his team's batsmen bat with a lot of freedom and score at 2 an over, I shudder to think of what their scoring rate would be when they batted cautiously.
    Thus spake Jagadish @ 10:30 AM |
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