SA vs AUS 2018: Tim Paine credits Markram - De Kock stand in stiff chase

Australia are just one wicket away from victory.

The duo added a stand of 147 runs. (Cricket Australia)

Chasing 417 to win in the second innings in the first Test in Durban, South Africa is still 124 away from gaining a lead in the series. The pair of Aiden Markram and Quinton de Kock added 147 vital runs together before Markram was dismissed. The onus is now on De Kock and Morne Morkel to guide South Africa to a win, which seems tough on the final day with just one wicket left. 

With South Africa 49 for 4, the pair revived the innings and brought the team back into the reckoning. Tim Paine, Australia's wicketkeeper, admitted to a tense situation at the height of the Markram-de Kock partnership but said the visitors remained composed. "I'm sure some guys were worrying. They frustrated us and we changed some plans," he told reporters after the day's play. "They played really well and forced us off our game but I don't think things were getting away from us.

"We knew that we had a new ball around the corner and what our attack can do to the tail," he added. "We knew we were one wicket away."

Paine played a crucial role in the key wicket of Markram with the Tasmanian snaring a brilliant take standing up to the stumps. "We were trying to trap him on the crease and get him lbw," Paine said. "I was very grateful that it stuck. From a 'keeping point of view that (standing up to the stumps) is what I try to do to change the game... tried it a few times on flattish wickets. We saw South Africa do it a lot with Vernon (Philander). It's a different scenario for batsmen to deal with."

Paine defended Warner's barbs directed at Markram in the aftermath of the run-out but admitted the scorn backfired. "We spoke to Aiden about running out their best player and one of the best players in the world," he said. "It was a huge wicket and to have him (de Villiers) run out for zero gets everyone excited and the boys were pumped up. It was nothing aggressive, just reminding him of what he had done to get him off his game... it didn't work."

"It was a superb innings (by Markram) on a really tough wicket with reverse swing, spin and it was a bit up and down," he added. "If we're being honest, he was close to winning that game. He deserves a lot of credit" concluded Paine. 


By Anshuman Roy - 05 Mar, 2018

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