Loading...
Loading Live Scoring...
*All times CAT (GMT+2)

Cricket | SA Team

'Black Caps recovering from shock'



New Zealand cricket coach Mike Hesson knows it will be challenging to face South Africa again, but he says they were not quite prepared for the rude awakening they received at the start of the first test match.

The Proteas crushed the tourists by an innings and 27 runs in the first test in Cape Town last week, after bowling out the Black Caps for 45 runs in the first innings.

“At the end of the first day, if we didn't already know we were in for an extremely tough game, we certainly realised it pretty quickly,” Hesson said at the weekend.

“We all knew it would be very hard coming into the test, but the reality hit home after the first morning.”

After the Black Caps were dimissed in 19.2 overs, spending exactly 100 minutes at the crease, Hesson said they had picked themselves up and decided to deal with the disaster another time, opting to move on with the battle rather than falling to pieces.

“We knew we had to be pretty strong mentally and we showed that at the end of the game,” he said.

“The match was dictated by the first couple of hours and from that point on we were largely competitive, but that horror session had already set up the game.”

Asked whether they made a mistake opting to bat first after winning the toss, Hesson insisted they had given the decision careful consideration beforehand.

“We looked at the wicket and chatted to the groundsman and to a lot of locals. We also communicated with the coaching staff and senior players and we knew it wasn't an easy decision,” he said.

“We saw the nature of the cracks and recalled last year's test when Sri Lanka put South Africa in to bat and they ended up making 580.

"According to reports, the cracks were even bigger than the year before, so it was a brave decision and, clearly, at lunch time we would have liked to have reversed it.”

While New Zealand's downfall was largely due to some superb bowling from South Africa's attack, some of the touring batsmen were to blame for their shots.

“When you're in that situation – in the process of being bowled out cheaply – it's natural to go searching and try to get back into the game in a short space of time,” said the coach.

“No matter how much we talk about sticking to our game plan, the human element comes over and you want to try and fix the situation. Of course, if you do that, the game plan goes out the window.”

The Kiwis managed to pull it back, however, and had Proteas captain Graeme Smith out cheaply in the second over of South Africa's innings.

They picked up a couple more wickets in the afternoon and restricted the home side's run flow.

“We caught it back really nicely, taking those last five wickets for 93 before they declared. Clearly, in the circumstances, South Africa were playing with a bit of freedom but it gave us opportunities which we took,” Hesson said.

“In the second innings, the third-wicket partnership between Brendon McCullum and Dean Brownlie (89 runs off 81 balls) – against a relentless attack – got us back in the game, and then the partnership between Brownlie and BJ Watling (74 off 122), against the consistently hostile attack, was as good as it gets."

Shop

The Proteas
20 Years, 20 Landmark Matches by Neil Manthorp
R171.00
The extraordinary book of SA cricket
The Extraordinary Book of South African Cricket is the perfect gift for any cricket fanatic.
R140.00
Jackers - A Life in Cricket
Robin Jackman has been entertaining cricket followers for more than forty years
R169.00
Bouch
Through my eyes
R147.00


Comments

More expert analysis and opinion from Sport24
The opinions expressed by Sport24 experts and bloggers are theirs alone, and do not necessarily represent those of SuperSport

Event Streaming

Channel Streaming

Other Live Streaming

Event Streaming

Channel Streaming

Sports Talk



Kepler Wessels
Proteas are streets ahead
When the number one test team in world cricket meets the side ranked eighth on home soil one...

Neil Manthorp
Reasons not to celebrate
This should be a time to celebrate everything good about South African cricket, from the genius of...

Haze's Comment
When they were kings
I was fortunate to grow up during the most intoxicating era of test cricket. Ray Illingworth's...

Mpumelelo Mbangwa
Any answers from tour of NZ & Aus?
It is very true that nobody likes to lose, not even in a kick-about game in the park. So the loss...

Faf du Plessis
Eager to take on the West Indies
I’ve been enjoying my time at home in Cape Town, but the focus has been on getting my hip right....

Neil Down Under
Week 2
Hashim Amla said after Sydney’s ODI that the series had been “closer than the scoreline would...