NZ vs SA, Test 2: South Africa win by eye level after Maharaj and Rabada put the hosts in trouble on Day 4

Kagiso Rabada and Keshav Maharaj left New Zealand in a desperate position on Day 4 as South Africa are just six wickets away on the final day to win the second Test and level the two-game streak.

Test 2: SA on the verge of victory after Maharaj and Rabada caused NZ trouble on Day 4 (AP Photo)

Test 2: SA on the verge of victory after Maharaj and Rabada caused NZ trouble on Day 4 (AP Photo)

HIGHLIGHTS

  • Kagiso Rabada and Keshav Maharaj left New Zealand unsteadily on 94/4
  • South Africa needs 6 wickets to seal a series leveling win on Day 5
  • Kyle Verreyne performed boldly on Day 4 with a first hundred

Kyle Verreyne’s first hundred and Kagiso Rabada’s fiery bowling magic put South Africa in total control of the second Test against New Zealand at the end of day four in Christchurch.

Kyle Verreyne’s unbeaten 136 allowed South Africa to declare their second inning just before tea at 354/9 and set up New Zealand 425 to win in about 136 overs, or four sessions. Rabada then fired both New Zealand openers and Maharaj got rid of Henry Nicholls and Daryl Mitchell to leave the home side at 94 for 4.

An unbeaten 60 by South African-born Devon Conway lifted New Zealand to 94/4 on stumps, still leaving them with 332 runs and just six wickets to survive the final day. Tom Blundell was goalless with Conway at the end of the game after 17 balls.

Blundell is technically New Zealand’s last specialized batsman. Next comes all-rounder Colin de Grandhomme, who hit a hundred in the first innings, and then the bowlers.

South Africa’s performance in the first four games marked an exceptional turnaround after losing by an innings and 276 runs in the first Test in which they were eliminated on 95 and 111 points.

New Zealand needed only to draw the second Test of the two games to earn their first straight win over South Africa in 17 tries over 19 years. But they saw their hopes of that historic success dashed in the face of Verreyne’s great innings on Monday.

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