South Africa were left shell-shocked after Ben Stokes’ fireworks, says Dean Elgar
South African opener says his side were shocked after being flayed by England’s batsmen in the second test on Sunday
South Africa opener Dean Elgar said his side were shell-shocked after being flayed by England’s batsmen in the second test on Sunday, but he appealed for patience with their new-look side.
South Africa’s bowlers were put to the sword on the second day at Newlands, bleeding runs as England amassed 629 for six declared in their first innings.
That included a bludgeoning 258 from Ben Stokes and an unbeaten 150 from Jonny Bairstow in a record 399-run sixth-wicket partnership.
“It was a very intense show from Stokes and a crazy day of cricket,” said Elgar.
“We tried various game plans against them but it was one of those days where nothing went right and all you can do is take your cap off at the end of the battle.
“It's a massive amount to try and drag back and we were a little shell-shocked the way things were going.”
Elgar, however, said South Africa were not a side in crisis after losing the first test against England in Durban last week.
They have now gone seven tests without victory, undermining their status as the top-ranked test-playing nation.
They have found it difficult to fill the void left by the retirements of stalwarts Graeme Smith, Jacques Kallis and Mark Boucher over the last 24 months.
They went into the last test with attack bowlers Dale Steyn, Vernon Philander and Kyle Abbott all injured.
“People must understand we are undergoing a change,” Elgar told reporters.
“We have a lot of new faces and we are going to cop a lot of criticism but we just have to take it on the chin and bounce back.
“We don't want to play badly and we know there's good and bad around every corner. But we need just one good knock to feel we are right back in form again.”
Elgar scored 44 before being caught by Nick Compton off the bowling of Stokes as South Africa ended the day on 141 for two wickets in reply to England’s score.