South Africa are off to a solid start having lost only one wicket in the opening session in the first Test against Bangladesh in Chittagong.
The Proteas were 104 for one in 28 overs at lunch after electing to bat on Tuesday. Dean Elgar (30) and Faf du Plessis (33) were in the middle for the tourists at Zahur Ahmed Chowdhury Stadium. Captain
Mushfiqur Rahim introduced spin in the ninth over and got immediate
reward as Mahmudullah sent back van Zyl (34) caught behind. Dean Elgar and Stiaan van Zyl gave the tourists a solid start putting on 58 in the opening stand.
Bangladesh left out Soumya Sarkar, Nasir Hossain and Rubel Hossain for the first of the two-match series. Teenage seamer Mustafizur Rahman made his debut as the 78th Test cricketer for Bangladesh. Bangladesh are playing three spinners in the match -- Shakib Al Hasan, Taijul Islam and Jubair Hossain.
South Africa left out Reeza Hendricks, Aaron Phangiso and Dane Vilas.
A placid pitch and a patient effort allowed South Africa to ease their
way back into Test cricket against a Bangladesh attack that lacked
potency in batsmen-friendly conditions. On a flat track, Bangladesh's
combination of two seamers and three spinners gave South Africa what
seemed like batting practice on the first day of the Test series.
Stiaan van Zyl enjoyed a gentle introduction to the opening role after
being promoted to the position alongside Dean Elgar, who played the role
of the workhorse. Elgar demonstrated the level of grind that would be
required of South Africa, something Faf du Plessis has become accustomed
to. When van Zyl was dismissed, du Plessis settled in for a long haul,
an ominous sign for a Bangladesh attack that already looked out of
Bangladesh seemed set for a long day when Mohammad Shahid began with a
half volley, a low full toss and a delivery sliding down leg in his
first over, but his early nerves soon settled. He induced an edge from
Dean Elgar in his second over but with no bounce or carry to speak of,
it did not even reach second slip. There was no swing either, and Shahid
changed his angle to around the wicket to try and force something but
had no luck.
Mustafizur asked a few more questions with his cutters but apart from an
lbw appeal against van Zyl, South Africa had the answers. Van Zyl, in
particular, showed off superb timing and routinely pushed the ball
In an attempt to slow South Africa down, spin, in the form of Shakib Al
Hasan, was introduced in the ninth over but that did not change van
Zyl's approach. He was as willing to go down the track as he was to hang
back but his fun soon ended. He followed a Mahmudullah delivery that
was going down leg and was caught trying to glance the ball past Liton
That was the only success Bangladesh enjoyed in the session as Faf du
Plessis joined Elgar in planting roots. Du Plessis' footwork may become
the envy of dancers as he advanced down the track to drive Mahmudullah
past mid-on, hoisted Taijul over his head and flicked him over
midwicket. With Bangladesh's seamers struggling to find a line that is
not too straight, du Plessis and Elgar will be eyeing an afternoon at
the crease and it may take something special to separate them.