Category Archives: Sports

Tigers’ tall task

In the eyes of the Bangladesh batsmen, Morne Morkel may have grown into a terror taller than his already towering 6’5” frame, but the task facing the Tigers — scoring 424 to win or batting out a maximum of 141 overs, 15.3 of which have extracted three wickets while yielding just 49 runs — is taller still.

For starters, Bangladesh’s highest fourth innings score in their 102 Tests before this was 413 against Sri Lanka in Dhaka in 2008. More relevant may be that Bangladesh’s highest second-innings score in South Africa is 252 in East London, October 2002.

Their highest fourth-innings score away from home is not much higher — 282 against New Zealand in Hamilton in February 2010.

Bangladesh fans will not feel much better when looking at their highest successful chase in Test cricket. It was a mere 217 for six against West Indies at St. George’s in July 2009.

Tigers make Proteas better

After the first day, which started with the minor debacle of Bangladesh skipper installing South Africa on a flat wicket, batsman Sabbir Rahman called the pitch a flat one repeatedly, even likening it to a Chittagong wicket. After the second day when South Africa declared their innings closed on 496 for three, fast bowler Taskin Ahmed reiterated his teammate’s statement, adding that they would look to draw if they could not win.

On the third day, they were bundled out for 320 by Protea pacers Morne Morkel, Kagiso Rabada and left-arm spinner Keshav Maharaj on the same, flat wicket. If one were to seriously gauge the huge difference between two sides playing on the same pitch, not just ability, but attitude too has to be considered.