How Markram's ton ensured Aussies spent fourth day sweating for wickets
Aiden Markram inadvertently found himself on the wrong side of a match-shaping run-out and nearly ran himself out when chasing the run that delivered him his third Test ton.
At the end of day‚ all that was well ended well even though Markram's 143 will seemingly be in vain.
Australia should wrap up the first Test early in the fifth day but Markram's ton went a long way in ensuring the visitors spent 95 percent of the fourth day sweating for the 10 wickets.
It took them 17 overs to get the top four but the next five was required another 62. In the interim‚ Markram stood firm with Theunis de Bruyn and Quinton de Kock.
In the absence of the seniors‚ he led the junior guard with a sense of purpose and a stature that'll suit him when he eventually takes up the test captaincy role.
The maturity he displayed when AB de Villiers ran himself out points him in that direction.
“It's (the run-out) is one of those things that happen very quickly David Warner is one of the best fielders in the world. As soon as I saw it was him‚ I didn't think it was a run.
"It happened so quickly in the heat of the moment. It was unfortunate and it wasn't nice being at the other end watching AB being run out‚” Markram said.
“If I'm not mistaken‚ I think it was Pat Cummins who was fielding at mid-on. I made it quite clear to myself not to run to Warner. I definitely wouldn't have taken the run if the ball went to him.”
Markram's place in the team was never under pressure‚ but his own excellence coupled with the inability to convert his 30's into something substantial was weighing down on him.
While the nervousness of the 90's something already prevalent in his six-test career with two dismissals in the 90's‚ the need to go big hung over.
He chose the time and place even though the situation looked hopeless at the time. Markram already has an understanding of the ebbs and flows of test match batting.
Markram said he found himself constrained and under pressure during his ODI captaincy against India where they lost 5-1
“It was quite a tricky stage for me because I was trying to establish myself in the side and obviously trying to lead a side against a very strong side.
"It was incredibly challenging for me and in terms of batting‚ I didn't always find myself in the moment. It felt very rushed and a lot like a blur‚" Markram said
"For what reason‚ I'm not quite sure and I haven't worked it out I guess.
"Maybe the captaincy had something to do with it but it's something I do really enjoy If I were to establish myself‚ I think leadership would be a bit easier."