New 'pace sensation' Abbott says couldn't have imagined better start to Test career

Johannesburg, Feb 24 (ANI): South African pace man Kyle Abbott has said he couldn't sleep from two days after he got to know he would be making his debut in Test cricket against Pakistan in the Centurion Test on Friday, adding it has been a dream start.

Abbott, who claimed seven Pakistani wickets on his debut, said had no idea he would be playing for the Proteas and could not have imagined a better start to his international career, Sport24 reports.

Abbott added he hasn't had any sleep in the last two days so his mind is not really functioning after taking seven wickets for 29 on debut in the third and final Test against Pakistan on Saturday.

Abbott added it's the first time his hands aren't sweating and he doesn't have a knot in his stomach so, when that all passes, it might sink in slowly.

The Dolphins seam bowler was rewarded for his 141 first-class wickets, from 37 matches, with a place as cover in the squad, after Morne Morkel withdrew from the third Test with a hamstring injury.

Gary Kirsten told him on Thursday, on the eve of the Test, that Jacques Kallis had pulled up in the nets, but Abbott did not heed the warning or take it seriously until the coach called him at 16:00 that afternoon and told him he was playing.

Abbott said it's been a special day and an incredible couple of days being with these guys, adding seeing how the number one team in the world goes about its business and experiencing the whole structure with the support staff is just an unbelievable experience.

Abbott took two for 16 in his first spell and five for 11 in his second to justify the selectors' faith in him, and his seven for 29 was the second best bowling figures for a South African on debut after Lance Klusener took eight for 64 in the second innings against India in Kolkata in 1996.

Coincidentally, it was Klusener to whom he paid tribute for his recent success and said the Dolphins' coach had played a large role in his blossoming career. (ANI)


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