South Africa hammer the West Indies in Trinidad

By Will Turner

south africa cricket

South Africa mauled a feeble West Indies inside four days in the opening Test match in Trinidad.

The margin of the win, 163 runs, hides the manor of the defeat in which the hosts were completely outplayed and outclassed. With recent heavy criticism of the standard of lower ranked test sides including Bangladesh, the West Indies will need to ensure defeats of this nature do not become a regular occurrence.

Only 34 overs were able to be completed due to rain which made the outfield unplayable. The West Indies were quick to make their mark on the game however with debutant off spinner Shane Shillingford removing both openers with sharp spin and Benn dismissed Hashim Amla before the close of play.

From here on in however, the game belonged to the Proteas. The middle order trio of De Villiers, Prince and Boucher all passed fifty to push South Africa to 352. Another note of disappointment for the West Indies came in the performance of debutant Pascal who could manage only 11 overs.

A good response was integral, what came was quite the opposite. The entire batting line up struggled with the pace of Morne Morkel and Dale Steyn, crumbling to 102 all out. There was however brief resistance from Deonarine and Chanderpaul but this was not enough, Dale Steyn took his 200th test wicket on the way to 5-29.

The South Africans then got to work on increasing their lead. Captain Graeme Smith who has recently come under fire about his own performances provided the glue, holding the innings together making 90 and allowing a declaration on 200-4.

This left Chris Gayle’s side the small target of 457 to win. It was Gayle who led his team from the front with an uncharacteristically dogged 73. His innings was unfortunately in vain as again the rest of the batsman folded to the South African bowling attack. The wickets this time were shared, the West Indies 293 all out.

Chris Gayle bemoaned his side for letting their work on day one slip away so soon whilst Graeme Smith paid tribute on his twitter page to pacemen Morkel and Steyn as well as debutant Lonwabo Tsotsobe.

After a show of such frailty things must change to stop a dismal run of results in the test arena. The cricketing world has highlighted the weakness of some test nations after Bangladesh’s series with England and performances of this nature could see this criticism creep the way of the West Indies.

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