Alas, the age of miracles are indeed over. It was always going to be a miraculous achievement if South Africa was going to snatch victory from a rampant Pakistani side in the second test at Rawalpindi – but it depended on every batsman coming to the party.
The overnight scorecard reflected the positive attitude of the South African batsmen. Even Elgar’s 17 off 24 balls showed intent. Markram scored a noble 108 when it mattered.
Temba Bavuma, that giant among men, can always be counted on to purse his lips, jut out his chin, and come out fighting, whether he puts up a big score or not. This time, he did his share, putting his back into it and scoring 61 runs.
Then came Faf du Plessis and Quinton de Kock.
The faithful, knowing that these two talented batters can score runs, were hoping that, just this once, they would produce a 100 runs or more between them.
Well, Faf came out, scored a four and a single, before Hasan Ali trapped him lbw in front of the sticks. De Kock made the long walk out to the pitch, got bowled first ball, then made the long walk back to the change room – no shower required.
A century ago, John Clayton wrote a very short letter to a hopeful playwright. It read: “Dear sir, I have read your play. Oh, my dear, sir.”
A letter to Quinton de Kock about leadership could read: “Dear sir, the people have watched your performance as captain. Oh, my dear, sir.”
Picture source: @OfficialCSA