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South Africa can be positive after dominant fourth test display

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South Africa went into the last "dead rubber" test with a lot of question marks but after a strong all-round team performance, the Proteas' fans can see some glimpses of hope with their beloved cricket team.

The Proteas had already surrendered the number one ranking to India after the back-to-back series losses to India and England, and won just one test match throughout 2015.

The injuries to strike bowlers Dale Steyn and Vernon Philander meant that AB de Villiers had to rely on an inexperienced bowling attack led by Morne Morkel.

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The worry for the captain, though, was that Morkel wasn't firing which meant he had to rely on the 20-year-old Kagiso Rabada to do the magic and the boy didn't disappoint. In the fourth and final test he took 13 wickets and became the youngest South African to take 10 wickets or more in a test match.

On the batting side, the opening batsman dilemma seems to have been resolved after the debutant Stephen Cook scored a century on debut and looked very comfortable at this level. Hashim Amla also seems to be back at his best after scoring a hundred in the first innings and 96 in the second innings. Temba Bavuma also was in fine touch as he scored 73 not out in the second innings and looked very comfortable against the English attack.

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Quinton de Kock also was instrumental as he scored his maiden test hundred and took various stunning catches to make that wicket-keeping position his. But, the selectors will have headaches come the next series when both Steyn and Philander are back in contention.

They will have to decide whether to go with a four-man pace attack which means JP Duminy, Morkel and or Dane Piedt could be dropped for Steyn, Philander and Chris Morris to return.

South Africa v England - First Test: Day One

Duminy struggled to score runs and his continued struggles against off-spin might tempt the selectors to think otherwise.

South Africa needed that win to boost their morale going into the ODI series that starts in Bloemfontein on the February 3.

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South Africa cricket
Cricket

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