Day three of the Centurion Test was an eventful one as 13 wickets fell in the entire day. South Africa managed to bowl out New Zealand in the first two sessions of the day, while the Kiwis took as many as six wickets in the final session of day three. Let’s have a look at five highlights of the day.
Kane Williamson and Henry Nicholls frustrate South Africans in the first hour
New Zealand skipper Kane Williamson and Henry Nicholls batted well in the first hour of the day. The pair frustrated the South African bowlers and didn’t take any chances till the drinks break. However, after drinks Kagiso Rabada dismissed Nicholls and that led to a procession of wickets. Wickets kept tumbling one after another and the Kiwis had no answers to the questions raised by the South African fast bowlers.
Dale Steyn completes 50 wickets in Tests at Centurion
BJ Watling’s wicket was Dale Steyn’s 50th wicket in Tests at Centurion. The Steyn-gun became only the second bowler after Makhaya Ntini to complete 50 wickets at this particular venue in Tests. Later, Steyn also got Neil Wagner’s wicket and went into the dressing room with three wickets in his account.
South Africa gain a healthy first innings’ lead
Kiwi skipper Kane Williamson scored a fighting half century but he didn’t get much support from the rest of his teammates. Wagner played a cameo of 31 but apart from him no-one else contributed to New Zealand’s tally. Eventually, the South Africans bowled out New Zealand for 214 in the second session of the day and gained a healthy lead of 267.
Tim Southee and Trent Boult work their magic
South Africa didn’t enforce the follow-on and de Kock came out with an aggressive mindset. He attacked the bowlers but Southee and Boult worked in tandem to get rid of the rest of the top order batsmen. Boult got rid of Stephen Cook and Faf du Plessis while Southee got Amla and Duminy in the same over. At one stage, South Africa was struggling at 4 for 47.
Quinton de Kock scores second fifty of the match
The left-handed batsman got his second fifty of the match. It came at a handsome strike rate of over 100 but soon after he reached his half century, Bracewell surprised de Kock with a short delivery and got him. South Africa lost six wickets in the session but they have managed to take the lead to a massive 372 with 4 wickets remaining. Their first target Tuesday morning will be to take the lead to 400. The pitch is going to be a difficult one for batting on day four and day five, so the Kiwis have a mountain to climb.