By John Brown
The South African tourists visited the County ground for a two-day match which was used primarily as practice for the visitors between Test matches. Both teams agreed to play fifteen-a-side, with only eleven able to bat or field. It was agreed that South Africa should bat first and they took full advantage of some excellent batting conditions on one of the hottest days of the year.
Although the South Africans lost Rudolph in Alasdair Evans’ second over, they lost only two more wickets before the declaration came twenty minutes after the tea interval. Ross Whiteley produced a rare nigh-unplayable ball to bowl the in-form Amla, thus achieving something which had defeated England’s bowlers in two Test matches.
De Villiers played freely against a second-string Derbyshire attack and he hit sixteen fours and two sixes in his 96-ball innings before he retired on 97. Duminy had had to work harder for his runs (69 from 129 balls) before he was dismissed by David Wainwright from the sharpest of return catches.
Du Plessis and AlbieMorkel added an unbroken 123 for the fifth wicket in little over an hour before the declaration after just seventy overs batting.
Derbyshire were left with twenty-two overs batting before the close and they saw the day out for the loss of only one wicket. Wayne Madsen and Usman Khawaja added an unflustered 57 for the second wicket before they both fell in quick succession.
Dan Redfern looked in good touch until he edged a catch to slip: after this all the batsmen, with the exception of Whiteley, struggled against the pace of Tsotsobe and the leg-spin of Tahir. Whiteley was making a welcome return to form following injury and he hit three sixes and six fours in his 63-ball innings.
Although Derbyshire were still 191 behind at the lunch interval, they declared, thus allowing South Africa another three hours of batting practice.
They sent in their lower-order batsmen for the most part, and these players found the pace of Mark Footitt rather more than they could handle.
Footitt took the first four wickets to fall when the score had reached only 38. Tim Groenewald and Jon Clare took a wicket each to reduce the tourists to 68 for six, after which Philander and Steyn played their shots to add a quick 74 in twelve overs.
By now the cricket had become fairly meaningless and it came as little surprise when South Africa declared at the earliest possible opportunity to leave the match in the most predictable of draws.
South Africa 365 for 4dec(70 overs) (AB de Villiers 97, JP Duminy 69, F du Plessis 68*, JA Morkel 49*, HM Amla 42) and 168 for 7 dec (40 overs) (VD Philander 68*, DW Steyn 34, T Tsolekile 26; MHA Footitt 4 for 38)
Derbyshire 174 for 9 dec (49 overs) (RA Whiteley 51*, UT Khawaja 37, WL Madsen 29, DJ Redfern 20; LL Tsotsobe 4 for 45, VD Philander 2 for 31, I Tahir 2 for 35)
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