Keshing in

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November 10, 2016
Keshing in

WAITING HIS TURN: SA's Maharaj

Maharaj hopes Hobart pitch makes him shine

New Proteas spinner Keshav Maharaj says he will bide his time to strike.

Maharaj played a massive role in South Africa taking a 1-0 lead in the three-match Test series in Australia.

The 26-year-old Dolphins left-arm orthodox turner bowled 40.1 overs of control and returned match figures of 140/5 in 58.5 overs in Perth in SA’s 177-run
victory.

Maharaj was doing a containing job on the Aussies while the pace bowlers did the rest.

But in Hobart, spinners have more five-wicket hauls in the third and fourth innings than pace bowlers.

And Maharaj is waiting for his chance to shine.

He says: “Conditions play a major factor.

“There will be a point in the game where I have to strike with the ball if it does start to turn or bounce, but for now I’m happy to hold up an end and let them [seamers] do the striking.”

The Durbanite’s containing job and his handy 41 not out in SA’s second innings in Perth could have guaranteed him a place in Russell Domingo’s side.

And he says he will stick to
the advice former SA left-arm spinner Paul Harris gave him.

Maharaj adds: “I did have a chat with ‘Harro’ before I got here and he had a few thoughts about
bowling in Australian conditions. I’m trying to replicate what he did because he was one of the most successful spinners for South Africa.

“He said your job here is to rest the fast bowlers because conditions are in their favour rather than yours, and you will pick up a few wickets along the way. So try and stop the game from one end and let them strike.”

Of his debut, he adds: “I was very nervous on the first day. I didn’t know what to expect. It’s very intense.

“For five days you’re focused on every ball. The only breaks you get is lunch and tea. It’s a proper gentleman’s game and a proper man’s game and a test of character.

“But it looked pretty straight to me and obviously any bowler that hits the pads is going to appeal if he thinks there is half a positive that’s going to come out of it. Fortunately it went in my favour.”

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