Rabada soars to reclaim top spot in Test rankings

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Rabada bowled the Proteas to a series-levelling victory in Port Elizabeth, earning man-of-the-match honours after snaring figures of 11-150 in the second Test.

A series of largely innocuous misdemeanours by Rabada were rounded off by him being docked three demerit points for brushing against the shirt of Australian captain Steven Smith after dismissing him in the second Test at St George's Park last weekend, taking him over the threshold of eight demerit points, which leads to an automatic two-match suspension.

Rabada pleaded guilty to the second charge of provoking Australia batsman David Warner when he screamed in Warner's face after dismissing him in the second innings. They were fined 75% and 25% of their match fees respectively with Warner receiving three demerit points and de Kock one. "I don't know what is going to happen to him after this Test but if he is around for the next Test match I think he would have learnt from his mistakes", said de Villiers. "I can't keep doing this because I'm letting the team down and I'm also letting myself down".

"The conversation we had with the match referee after the Durban Test - he was telling us that it's important for the rest of the series that we don't just get players out of matches", Faf du Plessis said at the post-match press conference. Anticipating the ban, he said, "I would have loved to be playing in the next game, especially coming off a performance like that".

It wasn't long before Pat Cummins departed to another edge and Rabada was celebrating a 10 wicket haul in the match. "I have to see it as a learning curve".

Rabada was found guilty of inappropriate and deliberate physical contact with Smith on the first day. In isolation, the incident would not be worthy of a ban, but Rabada's bank of demerit points changes that. My baptism into Test cricket in 2005 was a WHOLE lot worse!

"With the Stokes incident I didn't contest it because I knew I did it", he said. I am not happy about it but time moves on.

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After almost two full Test matches Australia's bowlers finally found a way to get out AB de Villiers, but from the moment Mitchell Marsh dropped a sitter from Aiden Markram off the bowling of Josh Hazlewood, it was clear the visitors were never a hope of defending the slender target they had set South Africa to win.

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

"I would like to open", he said in January but added: "It's a bit tough at the moment because there's two very good bowlers in those roles". My question was: why are both these incidents labelled the same?

"He (Rabada) has to show that passion, otherwise you can just put a bowling machine and robot to bat".

South Africa are now sweating on the return from a heel injury of Dale Steyn but he is yet to play a warm-up game and is a more realistic chance of featuring in the fourth Test in Johannesburg rather than next week in Cape Town.

"They should just let us play on, the cricket should be the main focus".

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