Friday, December 30, 2005

Many a slip

The South Africans have done many things right on this tour and they are still 1-0 down with a crushing 184-run defeat to show for it. They have bowled tightly and with discipline; they have not flagged in the field; they have not been outmuscled in the sledging department; and so on. So whats gone wrong? They have dropped catches; their batting has not taken the initiative; the captaincy has not been aggressive enough. Besides the bleeding-obvious advice to hold their catches, their captain needs to attack a bit more: the slips cordon often looks porous and too many times easy singles are being given away to a batting line-up that knows how to look for them.

What RSA need at Sydney is a big, blustery innings from Smith that lifts up the rest of the batting lineup. And they need to leave the butter at home for five days.

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