SA bowlers trashed by second stringers
ADELAIDE: A second-string South Australian XI, led by Tim Ludeman, gave South Africa’s bowlers a solid workout in their pre-Test warm-up game in Adelaide yesterday. Ludeman hammered 167 off 134 balls as the local selection amassed 435 for eight in reply to the tourists’ 489 on the final day of their twoday game ahead of next week’s opening Test against Australia in Perth.
Recognising that the placid pitch on which they had totted up almost 500 in 90 overs a day earlier was only going to deliver hard work for their bowlers, the Proteas opted to keep their prized strike pair of Dale Steyn and Kagiso Rabada safely under wraps ahead of the series opener. South Australia’s second XI made a fist of their notional pursuit of the tourists’ 489, rattling along at 5.41 runs an over before the match was called a draw late in the day.
Morne Morkel put in 14 overs for one for 67 while Vernon Philander went wicketless for 72 off 14 overs Morkel has spent months on the sidelines with a back injury that only allowed him to return to bowling in recent weeks. Morkel was the most threatening of South Africa’s pace attack in the absence of Steyn and Rabada on the most benign of surfaces.
Even though it was the final session before he was rewarded with a wicket - rattling the stumps of Alex Ross with the second new ball - Morkel showed he was capable of the sorts of spells that might prove decisive on a more responsive WACA surface next week. “He bowled some really quick spells throughout the day and you saw that spell with the second new ball, he looked really, really good,” said left-arm spinner Keshav Maharaj, who finished with three for 59.
“He looked at 100 percent from the Morne Morkel we know and hopefully he can carry that into the matches that follow.” Ludeman blazed 20 boundaries and eight sixes for the local side while opener Sam Raphael hit 91 off 120 balls with 17 fours. —