The movement was challenging: Bavuma
Much about Test cricket is adapting to conditions. Conditions change, demanding different responses from the cricketers.
Mohammed Shami was aware of this cricketing truth when he said, “The conditions yesterday when it rained all day and the bright sunshine today, you couldn’t have got more different conditions.”
Shami, who bowled with excellent rhythm, added, “But we focused and adapted. I think we bowled in the right areas, kept up the pressure. There was some help for us.”
All are special
Asked where he would place his five-wicket haul here on Tuesday, Shami said, “All five-wicket hauls in Test cricket are special. You cannot pick any one of them.”
He added, “Similarly you cannot pick a wicket or a batsman. All wickets are important.”
Asked what would be a good target for the Indian bowlers to defend, Shami said, “There are still two more days left. Anything from 375 to 400 would be a good target.”
Temba Bavuma fought hard for South Africa with an innings of 52. While he was pleased with his innings, the South African vice-captain conceded India was ahead in the game.
Asked about the conditions, he said, “The movement wasn’t exaggerated. It wasn’t the quickest wicket I have played on here. Credit to the Indians for bowling so well. Particularly, Mohammed Shami.”
Queried about Shami’s five-wicket haul, Bavuma said, “He’s a world-class bowler. We have seen him bowl like this around the globe.”
Bavuma observed, “As a group we want to avoid soft dismissals. But when someone bowls wicket-taking balls, all credit to him. The movement was challenging.”
About South Africa’s lack of match practice in Test cricket — it last played a Test match six months ago — Bavuma said, “I don’t want to be making excuses. You can have any number of practice sessions but match practice and match intensity are different.”
He said, “On the first day, you could see, we did not play with our usual intensity.”
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