Basin proves fruitless for Daniel Vettori

16:00, Mar 25 2012
Doug Bracewell
Doug Bracewell gives a double high-five to wicketkeeper Kruger van Wyk after dismissing South African opener Graeme Smith for five.
Hashim Amla
Hashim Amla raises his bat after an opening day half-century.
Graeme Smith
Graeme Smith departs the crease after being dismissed by Doug Bracewell.
Daniel Vettori
Daniel Vettori bowls into the wind on the first day of the third test.
Chris Martin
Chris Martin unsuccessfully appeals for the wicket of Hashim Amla.
Basin Reserve
Sky's television crew preps to talk to New Zealand captain Ross Taylor during the first morning rain delay.
Black Caps v South Africa
Hashim Amla of South Africa reacts after being stuck in the groin during day one of the third test match at the Basin Reserve.
Black Caps v South Africa
Hashim Amla of South Africa leaves the field after being dismissed while New Zealand players celebrate during day one of the third test match at the Basin Reserve.
Black Caps v South Africa
Mark Gillespie celebrates the wicket of Hashim Amla during day one of the third test match at the Basin Reserve.
Alviro Petersen
Alviro Petersen of South Africa celebrates his half-century during day two of the third test.
Black Caps v South Africa
Alviro Petersen (L) and JP Duminy of South Africa leave the field after play was delayed for bad light during day two of the third test match at the Basin Reserve.
Black Caps v South Africa
Mark Gillespie of New Zealand reacts after bowling during day two of the third test match at the Basin Reserve.
Black Caps v South Africa
Ross Taylor of New Zealand looks to the sky as light rain falls during day two.
Third test
JP Duminy acknowledges the applause of the crowd after bringing up his century.
Third test
Mark Gillespie of New Zealand fires one down on the third morning, while umpire Aleem Dar and South Africa's Alviro Peterson look on.
Third test
Mark Gillespie (right) celebrates the dismissal of South Africa's JP Duminy.
Black Caps v Proteas
New Zealand opening batsman Martin Guptill plays a shot as Jacques Rudolph looks on.
Black Caps v Proteas
New Zealand opening batsman Daniel Flynn plays a shot as Jacques Rudolph looks on.
Black Caps v Proteas
Martin Guptill drops a catch off the bowling of Mark Gillespie.
Black Caps v Proteas
Mark Gillespie celebrates his sixth wicket and test-best figures on day three against South Africa.
Third test
Martin Guptill plays a pull shot as South African captain Graeme Smith looks on.
Third test
South Africa's (from left) AB de Villiers, Mark Boucher and Graeme Smith celebrate the dismissal of Daniel Flynn.
Third test
South Arica's Dale Steyn fields from his own bowling as Ross Taylor looks on.
Third test
Daniel Flynn ducks under a bouncer on the fourth morning.
Ross Taylor
Ross Taylor gets down on his haunches after being struck on the wrist by a lifting delivery from South African paceman Morne Morkel.
vernon philander
South Africa's Vernon Philander fires one down on the fourth afternoon.
Ross Taylor
Ross Taylor walks off the Basin Reserve after being forced to retire hurt.
Kane Williamson
Kane Williamson sways inside a short delivery.
Kane Williamson
Kane Williamson stretches well forward in defence.
Kane Williamson
Kane Willamson walks off after being dismissed by Dale Steyn.
Third test gallery
Kruger van Wyk (right) and Doug Bracewell celebrate the wicket of South Africa's Alviro Peterson on the fifth morning.
Third test gallery
Mark Gillespie and umpires Richard Kettleborough and Aleem Dar make their way from the field at the close of play on the fourth day.
Third test gallery
South African captain Graeme Smith plays a pull shot on the fourth day.
Third test gallery
Chris Martin (left) appeals unsuccessfully for the wicket of Graeme Smith.
Third test gallery
Daniel Flynn walks off after being dismissed, while the South African team celebrate the wicket.
Third test gallery
Brendon McCullum walks off after being trapped LBW on the fifth morning.
Daniel Vettori appeals for the wicket of AB De Villiers.
Daniel Vettori appeals for the wicket of AB De Villiers.
Chris Martin
South Africa's AB de Villiers (left) and Graeme Smith appeal for LBW against Martin Guptill (centre).
Third test gallery
Morne Morkel fires down another thunderbolt as Martin Guptill looks on.
Chris Martin
Martin Guptill is devastated after being dismissed on the final day.
Dean Brownlie
Dean Brownlie walks off after being bowled by Morne Morkel.
Dean Brownlie
Dean Brownlie is clean bowled by Morne Morkel.
Daniel Vettori
Daniel Vettori is bowled by a jubilant Morne Morkel (right).
Kane Williamson
Kane Williamson punches one through the offside.

For a man who went wicketless yesterday, Daniel Vettori sure created plenty of chatter.

The former skipper, playing his 110th test for New Zealand, wheeled down 42 overs for 98 as his lean South African summer continued. This series, Vettori has two wickets at 122.5, from 110 overs.

Debate raged, on Cricinfo and between former internationals Ian Smith and Craig McMillan in the commentary box. Should Vettori play as a specialist batsman at No 6, enabling four other frontline bowlers?

Daniel Vettori
DEBATE: Daniel Vettori bowls at the Basin Reserve.

Is he justifying his spot as an all-rounder? Should he revert to limited overs cricket, where his bowling has been more effective?

Now a stock bowler and struggling to generate turn on lifeless pitches, Vettori freely acknowledges his role as captain Ross Taylor's run-saver while the pacemen attack.

In six tests this summer, Vettori averages 36 with the bat and has 13 wickets at 38. His eight-wicket haul in Bulawayo in November provided the bulk of those.

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Vettori, 33, admitted last week he was finding it difficult to back up from test to test after the stresses on his body from a solid 15 years of international cricket.

Now on 357 test wickets, Vettori is crawling towards Richard Hadlee's New Zealand record of 431 but how long before he gets there as he reassesses his career?

He says he is only looking as far as next year's tour of England, by which time 14 more New Zealand tests will have been played.

South African centurymaker Alviro Petersen said they had a careful plan against Vettori.

"He's a world class bowler and his main role is to tie up an end. We don't want to give him wickets because we know he's a big bowler for them. We just tried to score off any bad balls he bowls; he doesn't bowl a lot.

"A few did turn but I don't think the wicket is a turning wicket. He's a wily old customer and he'll try and bowl straight, try and get you lbw. If you can combat that, then you're fine."

The Dominion Post