Durban: Former Proteas batsman Neil McKenzie on Friday said that the South African batsmen need to find out a way to counter the spin duo of Kuldeep Yadav and Yuzvendra Chahal if they are to stage a comeback in the series.
The two wrist-spinners wreaked havoc with the ball on Thursday with five wickets together which limited the flow of runs in the middle overs and restricted the hosts to just 269/8 in the first innings.
“You know what sort of total you need at Durban and losing wickets at regular intervals didn’t help South Africa. Yuzvendra Chahal and Kuldeep Yadav bowled very well,” McKenzie said in an interaction with PTI.
He added, “The Indian pacers had asked questions upfront with bounce and then the two wrist spinners came into play. They tied South Africa down, cut off the runs and then got two big scalps of Quinton de Kock and David Miller.”
The former right-handed batsman further explained that the South African batsmen need to counter the spin in order to reduce that element of surprise.
“South African batsmen wouldn’t have seen a lot of these leggies, so they will need to go back and do their homework. They need to start countering this wrist spin from the next ODI.
“The partnership between Faf du Plessis and Chris Morris got South Africa back in the game, but they needed more firepower at the back end. It didn’t happen because they kept losing wickets at regular intervals,” he said.
He also talked about both the captains who played classy knocks in Durban. While Du Plessis’ 120 lifted the hosts to a competitive total on the board, it was Indian skipper Virat Kohli’s 112, his 33rd ODI hundred and first in South Africa, that led the visitors to an easy win by six wickets.
“I think it was an unbelievable innings from Faf (du Plessis). It was a special knock, given how South Africa were losing wickets but 270 on that surface was not good enough.
“He (Kohli) played a great innings and mixed it up with a lot of aggression. What I like about him is the different elements he has. He has got the power play, he can rotate strike and manipulate the field.
“He doesn’t go from 1st gear to 5th gear straightaway. Virat has a lot of gears. It was a terrific knock and it is always good to see two captains leading from the front,” explained McKenzie.