Proteas

Keshav Maharaj on Wiaan Mulder's magic hat-trick catch: 'I'll buy him anything he wants'

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Keshav Maharaj (Photo by Randy Brooks / AFP)
Keshav Maharaj (Photo by Randy Brooks / AFP)
  • Proteas spinner Keshav Maharaj said he'll be happy to buy Wiaan Mulder whatever he wants after taking the catch that completed his now famous Test hat-trick.
  • Maharaj accounted for Kieron Powell, Jason Holder and Joshua Da Silva in what was SA's first Test hat-trick since Geoff Griffin's effort against England in 1960.
  • Maharaj's hat-trick formed part of his 5/36 that helped SA beat the West Indies by 158 runs and win their first overseas Test series in four years.

Proteas spinner Keshav Maharaj is happy to foot the bill for whatever Wiaan Mulder wants after the young all-rounder gobbled up the catch that's put Maharaj in South African cricketing folklore.

Mulder's sharp take to get rid of West Indies wicket-keeper Joshua Da Silva during the hectic 10-minute period before lunch on the fourth day of the second Test between South Africa and the West Indies in St Lucia on Monday granted the Maharaj SA's first Test hat-trick in nearly 61 years.

In the lead up, Maharaj coaxed a false shot from Kieron Powell that was snared by Anrich Nortje at deep mid-wicket while Jason Holder's tentative prod was collected by Keegan Petersen at forward short leg.

WATCH | The moment that Keshav Maharaj made SA cricket history

Maharaj rated the Da Silva delivery as his worst of the three, but Mulder's safe hands ensured that Maharaj's place in history would be guaranteed.

While Maharaj's hat-trick was the 46th in Test cricket history since Fred Spofforth's effort for Australia against England in January 1879, it was SA's first since Geoff Griffin's feat against England at Lord's in June 1960.

"It's not often you get put in a situation like that one. There were so many thoughts of which delivery to bowl, so I decided to stick to what has worked," Maharaj said.

"It drifted down leg and I could have bowled a much better ball, but full credit to Wiaan for plucking that catch.

"Wherever he wants to eat or drink tonight, it'll probably be on me."

Such was the joie de vivre that SA approached what became the last day for the second Test that they won by 158 runs to retain the Sir Viv Richards Trophy, Maharaj and his provincial team-mate Petersen heartily sang an hilariously off-key rendition of Ben. E. King's Stand by me on twitter.

At the time, Maharaj was far from aware of the role Petersen was going to play in his landmark, but said they needed to find comical ways to switch off.

"We were having some fun. We've been having long and hard days of Test cricket, so it's nice to have a little bit of a dance before you go on the field," Maharaj said.

"I don't think I'm entering Idols any time soon, but Keegan and I play a lot of cricket together back home for the Dolphins, so we enjoy each other's company where we talk and sing nonsense."

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