Graeme Smith blames batsmen for loss against Australia

Graeme Smith praised Australia pacer Pat Cummins for his impressive debut at The Bullring Getty Images

Johannesburg: Nov 22, 2011

South African captain Graeme Smith admitted that the top order batsmen had let good positions slip in both innings, after their two-wicket loss at the hands of Australia in the second Test at Johannesburg.

“That s a fair assessment. It s difficult to win a Test when you collapse, losing six wickets for a hundred runs. I still believe setting 310 was a good total. We had our opportunities to take the game away from Australia but credit to them, they kept coming.

“They bowled well. I thought Cummins in particular got a lot out of the surface.”

Smith said it was disappointing that the series consisted of only two Tests.

“When you have top teams playing it s exciting. It s always competitive and it s good Test cricket.”

Smith said it was difficult to pinpoint a major turning point in a match in which fortunes swung dramatically but he said losing four wickets on the fourth morning had undone the work done by Hashim Amla and AB de Villiers in a century partnership for the fourth wicket.

“We had set up the game quite well and we just needed to form one or two partnerships. Losing four wickets set us back,” said Smith.

“That was the time we really needed to put the knife in.”

South African opening bowler Vernon Philander, who had five-wicket hauls in both his first two Test appearances, was named man of the series. (AFP)

South African captain Graeme Smith admitted that the top order batsmen had let good positions slip in both innings.

“That s a fair assessment. It s difficult to win a Test when you collapse, losing six wickets for a hundred runs. I still believe setting 310 was a good total. We had our opportunities to take the game away from Australia but credit to them, they kept coming.

“They bowled well. I thought Cummins in particular got a lot out of the surface.”

Smith said it was disappointing that the series consisted of only two Tests.

“When you have top teams playing it s exciting. It s always competitive and it s good Test cricket.”

Smith said it was difficult to pinpoint a major turning point in a match in which fortunes swung dramatically but he said losing four wickets on the fourth morning had undone the work done by Hashim Amla and AB de Villiers in a century partnership for the fourth wicket.

“We had set up the game quite well and we just needed to form one or two partnerships. Losing four wickets set us back,” said Smith.

“That was the time we really needed to put the knife in.”

South African opening bowler Vernon Philander, who had five-wicket hauls in both his first two Test appearances, was named man of the series.

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Australia’s Patrick Cummins makes the winning runs

AFP

Alexander Joe

AFP