Kagiso Rabada during a virtual press conference on June 13 2021 in Pretoria. Picture: LEE WARREN/GALLO IMAGES
Kagiso Rabada during a virtual press conference on June 13 2021 in Pretoria. Picture: LEE WARREN/GALLO IMAGES

Proteas fast bowler Kagiso Rabada grabbed his 10th five-wicket haul in Test cricket when SA cruised to an innings and 63-run victory in St Lucia at the weekend to go one up in the two-match series.

Rabada removed openers Kraigg Brathwaite and Kieron Powell in his first spell, then got the scalps of Jermaine Blackwood, Rahkeem Cornwall and Joshua Da Silva.

In spite of the convincing win, the paceman said SA is a young side that is still rebuilding.

“Even our most experienced players are young. Quinton de Kock and I are probably the most experienced  players after Dean Elgar,” Rabada said.

“For me at 26 to be one of the most experienced in the team paints a picture of how young we are as a team. That will give us huge confidence, not only moving into the next Test but the next years.”

West Indies captain Brathwaite had few positives to draw on from the heavy  defeat but singled out teenage fast bowler Jayden Seales for special praise.

The 19-year-old had played only one first-class match before the Test but took 3/75, with his figures slightly tarnished by a late onslaught from centurion De Kock.

Seales’ ability to swing the ball at pace off a good length bodes well for the future, Brathwaite said. “Not all bowlers have that natural length and he obviously swings the ball. So I was not surprised by his performance in this game,” the captain said.

“Even at practice, there are different little things that he does with the ball. He’s one for the future, big time. Obviously he’s young, but he was strong, his pace was up throughout and I really think he’s something special.”

West Indies performed well as a unit with the ball but were woeful with the bat as they were bowled out for 97 and 162, slumping to defeat by an innings and 63 runs. That will weigh heavily on their minds going into the second Test, which starts on Friday at the same venue.

“We’ve got to bat better. [Roston] Chase showed fight [making 62 in the second innings], but that first innings hampered us a lot,” Brathwaite said. “We’ll take a little break and come back stronger. For me it’s about getting your mind in the right place. It’s more mental than technical.” 

Reuters

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