Proteas batsmen fill their boots

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Day one of the two-day tour fixture against Derbyshire at the County Ground brought the South African batsmen plenty of valuable time at the crease on Friday.

Day one of the two-day tour fixture against Derbyshire at the County Ground brought the South African batsmen plenty of valuable time at the crease on Friday.

The Proteas, batting first after losing the toss, amassed a total of 365 for five in just 70 overs before declaring. Their response with the ball was considerable less impressive, with Derbyshire moving to a promising 75 for one – and a 290-run deficit – by the close of play.

While half-centuries from AB de Villiers, JP Duminy and Faf du Plessis lined a dedicated showing, Vernon Philander's removal of Matt Lineker was the visitors' loan breakthrough.

De Villiers' quickfire 97 was top of the pops. The hard-hitting right-hander struck all of 16 fours and two sixes during his 96-ball stay at the crease, laying a sound foundation for Duminy and du Plessis to later cash in on.

The duo obliged, with the left-hander climbing to 69 and the right-hander 68 not out. An unbeaten 49 from Albie Morkel and 42 from Hashim Amla, meanwhile, flanked the trio of half-centurions.

Jacques Rudolph, who might open the innings in the third Test if Alviro Petersen's recovery from a hamstring injury is delayed, was the only visiting batsman to fail on the day. Rudolph was out lbw to Alasdair Evans for 15 in the fourth over.

Bar Lineker's flop, Derbyshire's reply was outstanding – and built on the back of captain Wayne Madsen's 20 not out and an unbeaten 36 from Australian recruit Usman Khawaja.

Coach Gary Kirsten and skipper Graeme Smith will be eager to see their charges put through a testing day in the field come Saturday, which will serve as ideal preparation for the final Test against Andrew Strauss' men, which gets underway at Lord's on 16 August.

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