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South Africa vs Australia 2018: Dean Elgar believes the overtly friendly approach of Aussies wouldn't last long

205   //    04 Apr 2018, 01:29 IST

South Africa v Australia - 3rd Test: Day 4
South Africa won the controversial Test series 3-1

What's the matter?

Morne Morkel couldn't have asked for a more eventful series for his send-off as the Proteas registered the 4th biggest Test win in the history of cricket. In the aftermath of the sandpaper gate, South African opener Dean Elgar's comments on the new-found approach of their refreshed opponent team.

“I'm pretty sure it's not going to last very long. I think you've got to have a bit of a tenacious approach sometimes in Test cricket," admitted the star batsman in a post-match press conference after day 4, “Nice guys come second, that's my saying, so I think you've got to have an element of a little bit of proper fight out there, and sooner or later if your bowlers are clocking massive overs and they're biting their tongue, sooner or later they're going to unleash something." 

In case you didn't know...

The four Test-match series came to an end today at Johannesburg after Vernon Philander (6-21) bowled most of the visitors' batsmen out on day 5. It was also the last match for the Proteas star bowler, Morne Morkel after 12 long years of professional cricket.

The heart of the matter

After spending an exhaustible amount of time on the field, Elgar believes that the overtly friendly attitude from the Aussie bowlers would not last long. This change in approach can be a direct effect of the sandpaper gate incident that happened last Saturday.

Elgar accepts that some niggle from the opposition is enjoyable and in fact, was one of the key contributors in keeping Australia out on the field for more than 240 overs in the last Test. He alone frustrated the visitors for more than six hours in the second innings on his way to a gritty 81.

Talking about his opponents, he said, "You see guys like (Josh) Hazlewood and (Pat) Cummins and they just keep running in and you've got to tip your hat towards their efforts, no doubt." He also added, “You've got to tip your hats to the guys who've just come in now and are playing on a really tough wicket to bat on," as he acknowledged the efforts of the substitutes for Smith, Warner, and Bancroft.

What's next?

Now that the controversial Test series is over, the players will get some time to forget the tumultuous events and start afresh. The Proteas will tour Sri Lanka for a three-Test series, while Australia will tour England in June.

Author's take

Credits to Philander and injured Morkel, who took the game away from the touring party while it wasn't Australia's to win in the first place. However, within a week of the horror that befell on the Australian team, the courage to come out and finish the series must be appreciated. The spirit shown by the torn down visitors should be lauded at the very least and now, they have a mountain to climb.