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Ken Borland

Hendricks once again announces himself as ready & able

Posted on December 21, 2022 by Ken

Reeza Hendricks was able to once again announce himself as ready and able for a regular place in South Africa’s white-ball teams as his brisk half-century provided the impetus for a Proteas innings that was cruising for 300 but fell away badly at the death in the second ODI against India in Ranchi on Sunday.

Hendricks, brought into the team for the first time on the Indian tour because regular captain Temba Bavuma was ill, stroked a classy 74 off 76 balls, with nine fours and a six, looking totally at ease on a tricky, low and slow pitch as he injected valuable momentum into the Proteas innings.

South Africa, having won the toss and elected to bat, were able to post 278/7 thanks largely to Hendricks and his run-a-ball partnership of 129 for the third wicket with Aiden Markram.

Markram took time to settle when he came to the crease at 40/2 in the 10th over, especially against the wrist-spin of Kuldeep Yadav, which has troubled him in the past. But Kuldeep was surprisingly taken off after just three overs, and Markram then began to dominate as he struck 79 off 89 balls.

The former opener was able to find the boundary seven times and clear it once as he played some powerful strokes, off both front and back foot. But Markram’s dismissal, two balls after Heinrich Klaasen was out for a quickfire 30 off 26 balls, began a superb Indian comeback with the ball.

South Africa were 215/3 in the 38th over when Klaasen was brilliantly, and surprisingly given how poor a fielder he generally is, caught by Mohammed Siraj, running in from long-on off Kuldeep. Klaasen, who had hit a couple of sixes already, played for turn as he tried to hit over extra cover, but the ball went straight on.

India conceded just 63 runs in the last 12 overs, their bowlers hitting the pitch hard with slower balls. The tactic even kept the in-form David Miller relatively quiet as he finished on 35 not out off 34 deliveries.

Siraj was the pick of the bowlers, claiming the wickets of both Quinton de Kock (5) and Hendricks, who picked out deep square-leg with a short-arm pull, and he finished with 3/38 in his 10 overs. Siraj bowled four overs on the trot at the death, conceding just 12 runs, an astonishing effort.

The pitch is starting to dust up though, and the slower ball is working more and more effectively, but the effect of dew and the floodlights may counteract that in the Indian chase.

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