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Dean Elgar drinks in return to hundred-scoring form as South Africa make light of batting wobble

Dean Elgar helped himself to slightly tipple earlier than mattress after day one on the Wanderers – one thing many different South Africans who’ve failed to replenish would have been envious of as the nation navigates its third alcohol ban as half of coronavirus restrictions – nevertheless it was not essentially to soothe his senses.

Elgar had gone in on 92 not out, only a couple of pictures away from his first Test hundred in 15 months, as properly as shouldering the accountability of steering his aspect into a robust place after Sri Lanka had mustered simply 157 in their first innings.

“I had a glass of wine and it made me sleep very well but I’ve been in the nineties overnight in first-class cricket before so it’s not my first time,” Elgar stated. “I didn’t feel anything; I didn’t feel anxious. And I woke up nice and early as well thinking I might not wake up to my alarm. But no, I didn’t feel too nervous starting today’s play.”

The jitters, if there had been any, had come in the course of the course of the opening day. After racing to 39 off the primary 44 balls he confronted, Elgar was made to knuckle down, particularly towards Dasun Shanaka, who teased in the channel exterior off and nipped the ball off the seam. Sri Lanka’s assault improved as the primary afternoon wore on and so they demanded self-discipline from Elgar and Rassie van der Dussen. Elgar’s subsequent 53 runs took 75 balls.

“We had to absorb a little bit and there were quite a few moments when we went through the gears,” he stated. “You have to be able to adapt. You can’t just be batting in one gear and expect to be consistent.”

Elgar anticipated he would have to shift tempo once more on day two nevertheless it took simply 14 balls for him to carry up his thirteenth Test hundred, changing into the primary South African opener to elevate his bat to triple figures in 11 dwelling Tests. With the arduous work having introduced reward and van der Dussen properly set, South Africa appeared to be shaping up to bat as soon as – however when Elgar was dismissed off the sting to first slip, it sparked a collapse of 9 for 84 to depart South Africa on 302, a lead of 145. Elgar known as the full “quite under-par, especially after that partnership”.

Elgar and van der Dussen placed on 184 for the second wicket however no different South African stand contributed greater than 34 runs (that too concerned Elgar along with his opening accomplice Aiden Markram). The lack of ability for the opposite batsmen to kick on and South Africa’s penchant for collapsing – this was the eighth time in 16 innings they’ve misplaced 5 wickets for lower than 50 runs – is one thing Elgar was prepared to interrogate extra critically, though he wasn’t positive what’s holding them again.

“It’s maybe the nature of the pitches we are playing on, especially now. When you come into bat you’ve really got to be on the ball and it shows you how important it is to have batters in. I went out and then Rassie went out which is not ideal.

“But possibly from a psychological level of view we lacked slightly bit, or possibly we do not belief our method. We’ve acquired to take circumstances into consideration. Once you’re able to get via that point and respect circumstances, you may conquer the circumstances. Being our first sequence at dwelling we’ve performed in a very long time, we are going to handle it and take it from there. I believe it is a psychological factor and guys want to be made conscious of it.”

It’s something for South Africa to analyse post-series, around the bonfire, with some tipple for those who indulge. As things stand, South Africa can sleep on a favourable match situation and with a series win in sight, and Elgar warned Sri Lanka that it is the tourists who may need to keep the nightmares at bay.

“With covers on the pitch in a single day, there is a bit of moisture and it is nonetheless on high of the grass after we begin the day’s play and the wicket deteriorates,” Elgar said. “Hopefully tomorrow morning, the wicket nonetheless has sideways motion which has induced fairly a bit of hassle and there’s nonetheless that moisture and deterioration.”

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