Former players praise Proteas’ fight, regret no warm-up game

Several former national cricketers have congratulated the Proteas on their spirited comeback to draw the two-Test series against New Zealand in Christchurch, keeping intact their record of never losing a series against the Black Caps.

South Africa, comfortably beaten by New Zealand in the first Test at Hagley Oval when they were bundled for 95 and 111 in their two strokes, hit back this week with a second Test win of 198 runs.

The win has lifted the Proteas to fourth in the ICC Test Championship race, while New Zealand has dropped to fourth. The Black Caps are the defending champions.

As well as drawing a series against the most recent championship winners, the Proteas also won a series against last year’s number two, India, before heading to New Zealand.

Former captain AB de Villiers said of the comeback performance: “Our Proteas r always ready for a fight! Well done guys.”

He also congratulated several players and the leadership of the team.

Albie Morkel, who played a handful of Tests for South Africa but was a huge star in the limited overs game, said: “That’s a serious comeback! Well done to everyone involved in the Proteas lineup.”

Former Proteas high performance analyst Prasanna Agoram, who now works for Gauteng cricket, was also delighted with the performance of Dean Elgar’s team.

“The Proteas have beaten Australia in three consecutive test series away from home, never lost a test series in New Zealand and never lost a test series in the UAE. They deserve to be called tough tourists.”

Prasanna added: “Wonderful performance from Proteas.”

Ashwell Prince, who played many Tests for the Proteas, also shared his congratulations on social media, calling the win “brilliant”, while lamenting that the team was not sufficiently prepared before going into the first Test, which they lost hard.

Former opener Alviro Petersen was full of praise for the team that stayed in the series, especially after being so easily beaten in the first game.

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