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Toss win 'unfortunate': Williamson

NZ NewswireNZ Newswire 30/08/2016 Mark Gleeson
Black Caps batsman Henry Nicholls © Getty Images Black Caps batsman Henry Nicholls

New Zealand captain Kane Williamson admits he was "unfortunate" to win the toss after his side crashed to a heavy loss against South Africa in the second Test.

The tourists were trounced by 204 runs in the series decider within four days at Centurion after winning the toss and putting their opponents in to bat.

South Africa's first innings of 481-8 declared was the winning of the match when his side could only muster innings of 214 and 195, Williamson says. 

"A lot the information we got, although there wasn't much at this time of year, was that the wicket was soft, the wicket was green, both sides were looking to bowl," Williamson said.

"It was a very good toss to lose, and unfortunately I won it."

Kane Williamson in action against the Proteas. © Reuters Kane Williamson in action against the Proteas.

It was a soft wicket with tennis ball bounce and the ball was moving, but the Kiwi pace bowlers weren't able to use that, and some chances didn't fall their way, he said.

"They (South Africa) played very well to get to 450 but we still felt there was enough in the wicket to perhaps bowl them out for maybe a below-par total, which we weren't able to do."

Williamson said the way the Centurion pitch deteriorated should be addressed.

"I think perhaps the pitch became pretty worn probably too quickly, but at the same time you do want to see in Test cricket the pitch deteriorate a little bit where the spin comes into play and there is some variable bounce.

"I think it was probably from day two that that start to happen which is something you don't see very often, which sort of makes the toss, not that anyone knew at the time, probably quite important."

However, the side, which now travels to India for a two-Test series, will take some positives from the tough loss. Henry Nicholls, who top scored in the second innings with 76, did well against the sharp South African bowlers.

"He showed a lot of character which is always what you are after in any player," Williamson said.

South Africa had began the fourth day 105-6 and declared at 132-7, setting New Zealand an unlikely target of 400 on a pitch with uneven bounce and widening cracks that prove treacherous for batsmen.

Veteran quick Dale Steyn, a regular tormentor of the Kiwis, took 5-33 to lop the top off the batting order and skipper Faf du Plessis says he felt his team played almost the perfect game.

"That's possibly the best way I could have scripted it... extremely happy, it's been a while the feeling of winning a Test series." The first Test in Durban ended in a waterlogged draw.

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