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Rabada back at No1 after 11-wicket haul against Australia

Rabada back at No1 after 11-wicket haul against Australia

The 22-year-old fast bowler took his match total to 11 wickets with 6-54 in Australia's second innings, opening the fourth day by blasting out Mitchell Marsh's off stump in the first over to set up South Africa's six-wicket win at St. George's Park.

Unfortunately Rabada won't be playing any further part in the series, unless Cricket South Africa successfully appeal the two-match suspension, which came about after he received four demerit points - three for making "physical contact" with Steve Smith's shoulder, and one for screaming at David Warner after dismissing him on Sunday.

Warner accepted a Level 2 offence and was fined 75% of his match fee by the ICC over the incident, but avoided a one-Test ban.

Rabada's brilliance in this must-win Test match for South Africa extended beyond his bowling. They called me Braveheart, etc etc.

The thought has struck me with increasing conviction that the Aussie side presently touring our shores has a little sneakily gone out of its way, even if only with certain individuals most consciously involved, to goad known match-winning figure Rabada into stepping over the ICC-defined line of conduct. It was a shirt flick of two players and you would probably get one or two demerit points as a slap because it wasn't full body contact.

The International Cricket Council (ICC) today released the latest Test Player rankings.

"Obviously these days the attention has focused on what is allowed, what is not allowed, I just think that has changed so much over a year or two".

On day four Rabada blazed through Australia's tail to finish with six wickets to go with his five from the first dig and restricted the tourists to a lead of just 100, after they had resumed 41 ahead and five down.

"People talk about where is the future of Test cricket".

"The match referee said there are bigger things to play for here, that's why he didn't want to ban Davey Warner", he said.

At only 22, he has taken 135 wickets in 28 Tests and already has four 10-wicket hauls. Australia can not take any chances that their shoddy batsmen will have to face Rabada again in the Newlands Test, so they have already been working on a number of further charges to level at KG.

"If I do get banned I will have to see it as a big learning curve and not repeat the same mistake because I've repeated the same mistake in the eyes of the umpires. That's not our problem, I'll let SA deal with that one".

It is all so confusing, and divisive, and South Africans may well have some justification for arguing that the Proteas have copped the rough end of the censuring system - ironically against the team in the world with the strongest reputation by far, and for decades, for often incendiary and crude sledging.

"If I knew I did it deliberately I wouldn't have contested it", said Rabada.


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