KG [Rabada] has picked up his five wickets just in the space of 18 deliveries conceding only 13 runs. Isn’t that an outstanding effort from someone who was hit for runs at the start? During this fiery spell, from 0/59, he took his bowling figures to 5/72.
KG was hit for around 4 and half runs per over (RPO) in his first 13 overs and has not picked up any wickets. And from then, he went on to dismantle Australia’s middle and lower middle batting order.
Australia lost 3 quick wickets after putting on a 98-run partnership for the opening wicket. With Smith and Shaun at the crease, Australia look to set for a big fourth wicket partnership. And then came Rabada trapping Smith LBW in his 14th over, which triggered the collapse.
In his very next over, Rabada picked up the wickets of the Marsh brothers and Cummins. This is the over that has actually put South Africa in the driver’s seat. And then he cleaned up Starc to complete his five-for. With this fiery spell, Australia fell from 3/161 to 8/182.
Not just with the ball, but Rabada played a vital role with the bat as well on Day 1. Rabada walked in as night watchman with 15 minutes to stumps and remained unbeaten. This innings has ensured South Africa won’t have any further hiccups on Day 1 after losing Markram for 11.
Rabada made 30 runs against India in Johannesburg Test when he last walked in as a night watchman. He has scored 17 runs on Day 1 and 12 runs on Day 2. This will go down as another crucial knock from him.
Day 1 Summary: Australia are bowled out for 243 runs in the first innings after opting to bat first. South Africa in reply are 39/1 (trail Australia by 204 runs) with Elgar (batting on 11*) and Rabada (batting on 17*) at the crease.