Breaking Amla, de Villiers partnership vital, says Holder

CAPE TOWN, South Africa, CMC – Jason Holder says today’s third day will be key for West Indies if they are to get anything out of the final Test, and says his fellow bowlers will need to deliver a much more clinical performance in order to limit South Africa.

Jason Holder
Jason Holder

The Proteas ended the second day at Newlands on 227 for three, only 102 runs behind West Indies’ first innings total of 329.

Captain Hashim Amla was unbeaten on 55 and partnered by AB de Villiers on 32, and Holder said breaking the fourth wicket partnership already worth 70 runs, would be top on the priority list.

“We probably let them score a little bit too freely. The scoring rate was a little bit too high. Having said that, I thought we batted decently in the early morning but lost quick wickets,” Holder told reporters here Saturday.

“I think tomorrow (Sunday) it is very important for us to start well, come and get some early wickets and try to get de Villiers and Amla out and break that partnership.”

He continued: “We are 13 or so overs shy of the new ball but it’s important that we don’t leak runs early in the morning and just try to break the partnership. These two guys have held us up the entire series so it’s just about breaking this partnership as quickly as possible tomorrow morning and getting (Stiaan) van Zyl and the other guy (Temba Bavuma) in.”

Resuming the day on 276 for six, West Indies lost their last four wickets for 53 runs with Jermaine Blackwood converting his overnight 45 into 56 and Holder extending his five not out to 24.

In reply, the Proteas batted well in partnerships. Alviro Petersen hit 42 and posted 48 for the first wicket with Dean Elgar (8) before added a further 56 for the second wicket with Faf du Plessis who top scored with 68.

Du Plessis and Amla then put on 53 for the third wicket to make the Windies toil.

Holder said West Indies had created pressure for themselves by falling short of the par score when they batted.

“I think we were about 70 runs short … we should have probably got 400. We needed to take it in stages but we obviously lost wickets quickly this morning. However, we did score pretty quickly too but 400 was probably a par score on this track,” he pointed out.

He added: “We have to wait and see what tomorrow brings for us but it’s all about being a little more consistent and getting the ball in better areas than we did today.”

West Indies trail 1-0 in the three-match series after going down by an innings and 220-runs in the Centurion Test and drawing the second in Port Elizabeth.

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