JP Duminy says Perth century a ‘step in right direction’ for career
JP Duminy notched up his fifth Test century as he put South Africa on top against Australia in the first Test at the WACA in Perth.cricket Updated: Nov 06, 2016 10:12 IST
Australia has been a happy hunting ground for Duminy. Out of his five Test centuries, three have come against Australia and two have come in Australia. His first century against Australia, 166 in Melbourne in 2008, gave South Africa their first series win Down Under. In 2016, his knock of 141 at Perth has put South Africa on top in the first Test.
Speaking after the end of the day’s play, Duminy, who shared a 250-run stand with Dean Elgar, who also notched up his fifth Test century, said the key was to focus on every ball.
“Myself and Dean (Elgar) spoke about, focusing on the next ball, especially if there was something that happened in the wicket or a good ball was bowled. We came down the wicket and made sure that we focused on the next ball, that was the key to our partnership,” Duminy said.
The knock comes at a good time for Duminy, who was dropped from the Test team after South Africa lost the Test series 2-1 to England. The left-hander said being away from the Test team gave him determination to succeed.
“I sat down and re-assessed where I wanted to go and re-assessed my goals. Test cricket has always been a big part of my goal-setting, I knew that I was at a crossroad in terms of my Test career and I wanted to leave my Test career knowing that I had given it my all. I committed to giving myself the best chance, in whichever way that I could, so that was the difference,” he said.
With the absence of AB de Villiers, the onus of the South African batting is on Faf du Plessis, Hashim Amla and Duminy himself. Having moved up the order to No.4, Duminy said it was a role that he enjoyed.
“I have enjoyed in the first-class arena, batting at four, and to be given the nod to go ahead, especially with it being a crucial position in the South African team, was a positive for me. I knew I had to step up and fill some big boots,” Duminy added.
South Africa have never lost a Test match at Perth, having drawn one and won two out of the three Tests played at this venue. Thanks to centuries from Duminy and Elgar, they are well on their way to keeping their unbeaten record at the WACA alive.