Sufferin Smith and Slyly Smilin Strauss
South Africa were expected to dominate this series, win it outright but going into today’s rain threatened match at Durban, it’s the English who are in the lead.
Jacques Kallis’s injury, their team composition woes and the public mental disintegration overdrive that Smith is on with coach Mickey Arthur is hurting him even more while Stoic Strauss holds the aces after the ODI series.
Gibbs was dropped for this series for his inconsistency, now more than half the squad is guilty of being so. England were no models of consistency, they followed emphatic victory with abject defeat but thankfully kept their mouths shut while at it.
The slumps in the SA camp coincides with fighting, gutsy efforts from the homegrown England squad members. AB de Villiers, Duminy, Steyn and Graeme Smith himself have been unpredictable while Bresnan, Collingwood, Morgan (ok he’s Irish but at least he’s not South African) and Broad were on the mark for England.
These guys make up the core of each team’s test squad too and these developments set a nice sub plot for the test series. Now, only for Pietersen and Smith to get into their groove and kick the saturation out of the South African fan’s system.