17 Mar 2017

Proteas to learn from Black Caps

6:45 am on 17 March 2017

South Africa will be looking to learn from the Black Caps when they walk onto the Basin Reserve for day two of the second Test today.

The South African batsman JP Duminy

The South African batsman JP Duminy Photo: PHOTOSPORT

Anchored by Henry Nicholls' maiden Test century, the Black Caps were dismissed for 268, part-time spinner JP Duminy proving the main destroyer for the Proteas with 4 for 47.

Bowled out half an hour before stumps, the Black Caps made the most of their chances in removing both South African openers cheaply in the seven overs available to them.

With Stephen Cook removed by Tim Southee for three, and Dean Elgar by Colin de Grandhomme for nine - both caught by Jimmy Neesham at second slip - to finish the day on 24-2.

Duminy says the match is evenly poised, and expects Friday to feature as a key day as both sides hunt a win after the rain-disrupted first Test in Dunedin ended in a draw.

"I think tomorrow's going to be a big day in terms of where this Test match goes," Duminy said.

"We're going to have to graft hard as a batting unit. The first hour's going to be crucial - there'll still be a hint of swing with Southee there, so we're going to have to bat well."

Duminy says there are a few key lessons the Proteas can take into the second day, with Nicholls' application in compiling his maiden Test century leading the way.

The 25-year-old left-hander came to the wicket late in the morning on day one, with the Black Caps teetering at 21-3 after losing opener Tom Latham (8), skipper Kane Williamson (2) and Neil Broom without scoring.

His 118 spanned three sessions, underpinned a 116-run sixth wicket stand with wicketkeeper BJ Watling, came off 161 balls and included 15 boundaries.

"To come out and play as positively as he did is probably the way to go on a surface like that," Duminy said.

"He never backed off at any stage, always looked to play his shots and be positive, and on a wicket like that, it's probably a recipe for success.

"Hopefully, we can take something out of that."