Ravindra shines with double-ton as New Zealand dominate South Africa

Ravindra racked up 240 from 366 balls, the highest Test score at the Bay Oval

By Reuters

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New Zealand's Rachin Ravindra celebrates his double century. — AFP
New Zealand's Rachin Ravindra celebrates his double century. — AFP

Published: Mon 5 Feb 2024, 12:01 PM

New Zealand batsman Rachin Ravindra converted his maiden century into a brilliant double-hundred before the hosts tore through South Africa's top order to dominate day two of the series-opening Test in Mount Maunganui.

Ravindra racked up 240 from 366 balls, the highest Test score at the Bay Oval, to help Tim Southee's side reach an imposing total of 511, the hosts having been put in to bat by South Africa's debutant skipper Neil Brand.


Towering paceman Jamieson then took two wickets in three balls in his second over as an under-strength South Africa crumbled to be 80 for four at stumps.

Number five David Bedingham was 29 not out and Keegan Petersen was on two, the Proteas trailing by 431 runs late on a glorious afternoon.


Saddled with six debutants, South Africa battled hard to contain the hosts on a largely docile wicket, and all-rounder Brand took six wickets for 119 with his left-arm spin in a sparkling debut with the ball.

However, the Proteas had few answers for Ravindra, who pushed on after Kane Williamson fell for 118 in the morning, becoming Ruan de Swardt's first Test wicket in the process.

Ravindra brought up his 200th run with an easy single off Brand and soon eclipsed BJ Watling's previous highest score of 205 at the ground.

Having made a total of 73 runs from his first Test six innings, left-hander Ravindra's return to the squad after two years in the wilderness has been a triumph.

"You always want to do well to -- not necessarily to prove (yourself) to team mates, but always sort of feel (you) belong," said the newly-minted number four.

"But I think the beauty of this team, it doesn't actually matter.

"Regardless of what you do on the field, you're picked for a reason and you sort of gel into the group quite well so you can go out there and just express (yourself)."

The classy 24-year-old's nine-hour knock of 26 fours and three sixes came to an end when he was bowled between his legs attempting to pull Brand to the fence.

The World Cup hero came off to a standing ovation from his team mates and fans on the grassy banks at the Bay Oval.

Ravindra's wicket was of little relief for the Proteas bowlers, who were cannon fodder for tail-ender Matt Henry as he blasted 27 runs off nine balls to push the hosts past 500.

The Proteas' opening batters held firm for nine overs until Jamieson's intervention.

He had Brand caught behind for four with a botched leave that caught the bottom of the bat, before dismissing number three Raynard van Tonder lbw for a duck two balls later.

Paceman Henry bounced out opener Edward Moore (23), who sent a thick edge to Devon Conway.

Number four Zubayr Hamza was then removed by spin-bowling all-rounder Mitchell Santner for 22, the ball pinging off thigh and elbow in a muddled pull-shot before hitting the stumps.

Jamieson was unlucky not to finish the day with a third victim when Bedingham, on 18, hooked to Henry at fine leg only for the paceman to spill the chance and see it roll to the rope for four.

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