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South Africa draw with Victoria in cricket

AAP logoAAP 18/11/2016 Roger Vaughan

Under-siege captain Faf du Plessis has only managed a short innings against the pink ball as South Africa maximised their preparations for the third cricket Test.

The tourists drew with a Victoria XI in Saturday's day-night game at the MCG, scoring 4-205 from 50 overs.

Victoria was earlier bowled out for 258 off 45.2 overs, with the game - shortened from a two-day match - played under Test rather than one-day rules.

Next week will South Africa's first day-night Test and their only priority was time in the middle under lights to adapt to match conditions with the pink ball.

But left-arm chinaman spinner Tabraiz Shamsi boosted his chances of a Test debut by snaring 4-72 from 12 overs.

As du Plessis awaits an ICC hearing for alleged ball tampering in the "mintgate" controversy, he faced 18 deliveries for his 12.

Then the ball was changed and with the next delivery, paceman Jackson Coleman had him caught at midwicket off a pull shot.

South African players have rallied around their captain over the ball-tampering controversy, with injured paceman Dale Steyn and teammate Kagiso Rabada expressing their anger on social media.

A date is yet to be set for du Plessis' hearing and if he's found guilty, he could be suspended for the third Test.

Another problem for the all-conquering South Africans remains opener Stephen Cook, whose run of outs continues.

He made only 11 before Coleman trapped him lbw.

But Shamsi said the tourists had adapted well to the pink ball and were happy ahead of Adelaide.

"Some people say there are difficulties seeing it, but I think the guys have done enough practice with it, just to pick it up," Shamsi said.

"So it's not too bad.

"We've had enough practice with it and we're happy to move forward."

Hashim Amla, who strongly defended his captain on Friday at a media conference, top-scored for the tourists with 81no.

Opener Dean Elgar retired on 40.

Earlier, young Victorian batsmen Seb Gotch (53), Matthew Short (52) and Sam Harper (41) provided the backbone of the Victorian innings before allrounder Evan Gulbis smashed 53 from 28 balls at No.8.

Rabada (3-37) snared veteran openers Rob Quiney and Aaron Finch and then dismissed Ian Holland to leave Victoria reeling at 3-47.

Gotch and Short then steadied the innings with a 79-run stand.'

Victorian Sam Grimwade hurt his shoulder while fielding and will undergo scans.

Victoria continue to monitor paceman John Hastings, who missed Saturday's hitout due to an ankle injury.

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