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Soft dismissals on Boxing Day floored Proteas batsmen, says Kyle Verreynne

Published Dec 26, 2022


Johannesburg - Kyle Verreynne is fast becoming South Africa’s man to front up to the tough situations. And that’s not only out in the middle.

It was just last week in Brisbane that South Africa’s nuggety wicket-keeper had to face the Australian media contingent to explain the malaise that is the Proteas’ woeful batting unit after the first day’s play.

On Monday, in Melbourne, Verreynne found himself in the exact situation, having to once again comprehend and find ways of making sense of yet another batting collapse on the opening day of the second Test

His second successive half-century, which formed part of a 112-run partnership with top-scorer Marco Jansen (59) had provided the Proteas with the hope that they may pass 200 for the first time in seven successive innings, but two collapses on either end left the visitors with a paltry 189.

Without throwing any of his teammates under the bus for their role in yet another horrendous batting display, Verreynne showed character in providing an honest reflection of the dire situation the visitors have placed themselves in.

“I think today is a bit harder to accept than the previous six innings. If you look back at those games, it was a lot of good bowling, and where we stuck to our gameplans, but the bowling was unfortunately able to undo us.

“I thought today was the first time in the last couple of games where we had more soft dismissals than not and that is the disappointing thing,” Verreynne said.

For large parts of the partnership between Verreynne and Jansen batting seemed a comfortable proposition. The surface was not behaving anything like Brisbane’s “Green Mamba” and Verreynne admitted that with sufficient application there are plenty of runs to be scored.

“This wicket played better than the previous Test. I think myself and Marco managed to get through those first 20 balls. That’s probably where we fell short during that initial period in the other partnerships,” he said.

“A day one Test wicket is always going to be tough when you come in. Unfortunately most of the batter did not manage to get past that. I felt that Marco and I put on an emphasis on those first 20 balls and once we got through that it played really nicely. That’s what we focused on.”

Australian all-rounder Cameron Green was the chief-destroyer for the home team with figures of 5/27 as he ran through the top and tail of South Africa’s batting unit.

In an attack possessing the speed and swing of Mitchell Starc and Pat Cummins and the solidity of Scott Boland, Green may have been a surprise wrecking ball. But Verreynne believes the tall all-rounder definitely poses some pertinent questions.

“He (Green) is a bit different because he is so tall. He gets more bounce. I also find that he shapes the ball nicely. He offers a bit extra there. He is the fourth seamer, so they use him in short bursts and he can just charge in, so as a batter you need to be switched on,” Verreynne said.