Cape Times

Four areas the Proteas can improve on ...


Opening partnershi­p: Dean Elgar and Aiden Markram have opened the batting together on 47 occasions, and only three times have the shared century stands, two of which came against Bangladesh in the first two matches they played together. Individual­ly they have been alright, but given the inexperien­ce that follows them in the order, the Proteas need more from their opening partnershi­p

No 3: Keegan Petersen must be given an extended run there. The problem is he won't be able to play another Test until December, so whatever work he will feel he needs to do after his first Test experience will have to be done at domestic level or at SA A level, if that team can secure a series or two somewhere. His technique looks solid enough, it's the mental part of his game that will need work.

Consistenc­y: South Africa avoided the catastroph­ic collapses that have become a hallmark of their batting in the last few years. Yes, 73/3 in the second innings of the second Test was not a good look, but the Proteas of a few years back might have folded for 100 and not made 174 as was the case in the second Test against the West Indies in St Lucia.

There is greater awareness of the problem, which is a start. Avoiding it, remains a work in progress.

All-rounder: Wiaan Mulder was good with the ball - especially in the West Indies' first innings in the second Test - excellent in the field, but with the bat he still needs to make an impact.

The conditions and ball used in the series against the West Indies, made batting harder, but Mulder is aware he needs to contribute more as he tries to make an impression at internatio­nal level.

What the series in the Caribbean made clear, is that once he gets his act together with the bat, he will be an influentia­l player for the Proteas.

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