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HomeAustraliaPLAYER RATINGS: Proteas flying, Australia humiliated

PLAYER RATINGS: Proteas flying, Australia humiliated



Last Updated on 6 years by Charbel Coorey

The Australians put their hands down their pants and came out with nothing. The true character of the Aussies has been exposed in the series.

I’ve already had a rant about their attitude, and how they have absolutely embarrassed us Australians on this tour. It is not merely about the ball tampering, but the lack of fight when their back has been against the wall. Everything that has happened off the field has rubbed off on their cricket, which has progressively got worse as the series has gone on, and even prompted cheating as a desperate measure.

Anyway, not much has been spoken of in terms of the cricket amid the drama. I’ll get the ball rolling somewhat, rating each player from both sides out of ten:

South Africa:

1. Dean Elgar: A player I’d love to have in the Australian team. When you look at the two teams on paper, you don’t look at Dean Elgar as one of the most naturally gifted players. However, what he may lack in natural talent, he makes up for in commitment and determination. In this Test, he became just the second player in Test history after Desmond Haynes to carry his bat on three separate occasions. Brilliant 141* in the first innings held things together for South Africa. Brilliant performance. 10

All South Africans should be in LOVE with Dean Elgar

2. Aiden Markram: Out early for a duck on the first morning, but batted really well in the second innings to stretch the lead for the Proteas. He is very good to watch, and has a big future. 7

3. Hashim Amla: The new James Vince? Starts again for the Hash, and got out to two loose shots. Despite failing to get out of the 30s in each innings, he contributed to two important partnerships in the match. 6

4. AB de Villiers: Super AB was at it again, registering two half centuries. He had Australia panicking, and we all know what they resorted to… 8

5. Faf Du Plessis: Difficult series continues for the South Africa skipper, with just 25 runs in this match. 3

6. Temba Bavuma: Disappointing return to the side for Temba Bavuma, who was not in the runs, and also missed some opportunities in the field which is unlike him. Expect him to be better in Johannesburg with a match under his belt. However, if Dale Steyn returns, will it be he who misses out? 2

7. Quinton de Kock: Quinton…. the man who has helped inspire some fire in the belly of the Proteas after a flat first up performance in Durban. Solid second innings half century to stretch out the lead and drive the Aussies further into the ground.  6

8. Vernon Philander: Kagiso Rabada has been brilliant for South Africa, but you simply can’t ignore the contribution of Vernon Philander. Awesome second innings half century, to go along with more economical bowling that is helping build pressure from one end. Superb from the Vern. 8

9. Kagiso Rabada: KG’s response to David Warner’s onslaught in the first innings shows how good this kid really is. Threatened right throughout the match, and aimed for Cameron Bancroft’s sandpaper in his pants quite a bit in the second innings. Also provided key support to Dean Elgar in the first innings to propel South Africa above 300. Another fine performance. 8

10. Keshav Maharaj: Steady with the ball in both innings, going for under three an over and picking up two second innings wickets. A steady performance. 6

Morne Morkel was brilliant

11. Morne Morkel: Ah, Morne. One of his finest performances. Ripped through Australia in both innings, finishing with nine wickets, including the wicket of world no.1 ranked Steve Smith in both innings. It was going to take something special to take the Man of the Match award away from Dean Elgar, and Morkel delivered. He also picked up his 300th Test wicket along the way. What a performance in his penultimate Test. 10


1. Cameron Bancroft: Thrown under the bus by his more senior teammates, Bancroft did very well with the bat. He played with freedom in the first innings, playing a key role in keeping Australia in the game with his 77. Made a start in the second innings, but it was all downhill from there for his team. On his batting alone, he did well. In terms of putting his hands down his pants, not so good. 7

2. David Warner: Starts in both innings. Was bowled on his inside edge again in the first innings. Did not display good leadership skills in this Test. Then again, who’s surprised? 4

3. Usman Khawaja: Promising 75 in the second innings in Port Elizabeth, but nothing here. 1

4. Steve Smith: Obvious to see the kind of match Smith had. Deservedly stripped of the captaincy, and should miss a few Tests if Cricket Australia are serious. His batting failed to deliver, in line with my prediction before the series that he would average under 40 against better bowlers in conditions that are livelier than the rubbish we see in Australia. 0

0/10 for Steve Smith. A Test to forget. Terrible.

5. Shaun Marsh: Absolutely awful shot in the first innings to gift Morne Morkel his 300th Test wicket, and then was out for a golden duck in the second innings. 2

6. Mitchell Marsh: One wicket with the ball, and not much else to show. 3

7. Tim Paine: The way he conducted himself after the match was good to see. Spoke about Australia’s need to find their new identity, which I couldn’t agree more with. Hoping he wasn’t in the know about the ball tampering issue. Stood up with the bat, picking up a not out twice. Solid with the gloves, too. 7

8. Patrick Cummins: Stepped on the ball “on accident on purpose” in the first innings which was not good to see from one of the nice guys in Australian cricket. Otherwise, bowled with heart, finishing with seven for the match. Other than tape and sandpaper, he was Australia’s best. 8

9. Mitchell Starc: Certainly doesn’t look to be at his absolute best. Could be struggling with that calf injury. 1/81 followed by 1/98. A tough outing. 3

10. Nathan Lyon: Took his 300th wicket in this Test, but sadly on a very flat day for Australia. Bowled pretty well in the Test, picking up five wickets across the two innings. ‘Gaz’ is a class bowler. 7

11. Josh Hazlewood: Five wickets also for Josh Hazlewood, at a good economy rate. Showed improvement in this Test, that’s for sure. 7


My final say: A Test match that will be remembered for all the wrong reasons, but congratulations to South Africa who take a very deserving 2-1 series lead. They have not backed down from the Australians, and the Aussies have clearly not handled things very well.
In the final Test, Steve Smith will be missing, and you think a few others from the Australia team will be missing, too. Weather permitting, anything other than a 3-1 series victory to South Africa will be a big surprise.
Keen to hear your thoughts!
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Charbel Coorey
Charbel Coorey
Charbel is the owner & founder of, based in Sydney, Australia. He started the website to fulfill his love for the game of cricket. Charbel has been featured on other publications including OP India, Times of India, and The Roar, among others. He is also a keen fantasy sports player. Charbel has also had the privilege of interviewing cricketers on the CricBlog TV YouTube channel, including James Neesham, Rassie van der Dussen, Andrew Tye, Shreyas Gopal, Jaydev Unadkat and Saurabh Netravalkar: For any story tips or questions, you can contact Charbel at

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