On a day when most observers would have been keen to bowl first, South Africa captain Faf du Plessis won the toss and elected to bat first in the first Test against New Zealand at Sahara Stadium Kingsmead on Friday.
The toss had been delayed for half-an-hour due to a damp outfield caused by overnight dew and a heavy layer of cloud hung over a dingy Kingsmead.
Du Plessis, leading in a Test for the first time in the absence of the injured AB de Villiers, said his decision to bat first was based on his hope that the ball would be made wet by rolling through the damp outfield, removing the prospect of swing.
South Africa’s XI is as expected with spinner Dane Piedt playing alongside a three-pronged pace trio of Kagiso Rabada and the returning Dale Steyn and Vernon Philander.
New Zealand have made one change with seamer Doug Bracewell replacing spinner Ish Sodhi.
South Africa – Dean Elgar, Stephen Cook, Hashim Amla, Faf du Plessis, Temba Bavuma, JP Duminy, Quinton de Kock, Vernon Philander, Dane Piedt, Kagiso Rabada, Dale Steyn.
New Zealand – Tom Latham, Martin Guptill, Kane Williamson, Ross Taylor, Henry Nicholls, BJ Watling, Mitchell Santner, Doug Bracewell, Neil Wagner, Tim Southee, Trent Boult.
The Citizen reporter Ken Borland will be giving us live updates from the Proteas match in the widget below.