Kagiso Rabada endured a 39-month break between five-wicket hauls before taking five for 34 on Saturday to wrap up an innings win for the Proteas in the first Test against the West Indies.
Even though the fast bowler said he was relieved to end that dry spell, however, the failure to notch the statistical landmark was not frustrating for him.
“Cricket is a game where you’re measured by the highest accolades like scoring hundreds or taking five and 10-fors, so you always strive to do that, but it’s not like you’re looking for that or desperate for it because sometimes you can bowl really well and not get any wickets. It’s an old cliché but they do tend to repeat themselves,” Rabada said.
“Unfortunately I haven’t been able to do the five-for thing for the last couple of years but I knew I just had to be consistent in my preparation.
“But I am quite relieved to get it. It’s like scoring a hundred. Who wouldn’t be happy?”
Having taken his 10th five-wicket haul in just 46 Tests, Rabada became the seventh South African to join that club.
He felt the Proteas, by returning to basics and playing as a team, were ruthless as they battered the West Indies into submission.
“In previous games we were probably lacking in important periods. We let the game slip away. We would be good in patches and at other times quite sloppy,” he said
“We’ve identified the moments in the past when we slackened off and in this Test we kept our foot on the throttle.
“We are a young team, we are rebuilding, and we will take a lot of confidence from this performance.
“We must keep building on what we have established in this Test and we will stick to our processes and not take anything for granted.”