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BJ Watling urges more caution against Keshav Maharaj

Keshav Maharaj has picked 13 wickets in three innings for South Africa in the series
Keshav Maharaj has picked 13 wickets in three innings for South Africa in the series

New Zealand wicket-keeper batsman BJ Watling has urged his team-mates to adopt a cautious approach against South Africa left-arm spinner Keshav Maharaj after his match-winning spell in Wellington.

Maharaj picked six wickets in the second innings and helped the Proteas restrict New Zealand to 171 runs, resulting in a slender 81-run target for the visitors which they completed with eight wickets in hand.

Even in the first Test in Dunedin that ended in a draw, the 27-year-old picked a five-wicket haul to help South Africa dismiss New Zealand for 341 in their first innings.

Praising Maharaj for his exploits with the ball on the third day, Watling felt New Zealand batsmen lacked discipline against the left-arm spinner.

"He was disciplined in his areas but that wicket wasn't spinner-friendly," Watling said of the Proteas spinner," said Watling.

"We were probably not as disciplined as we'd like to be and there are definitely improvements we need to make.

"We've played a lot of spin and we've got some very good players of spin in this team. For me, it's just about making better decisions."

One batsman who had a rare failure in the Wellington game was Kane Wiliamson, who has been the backbone of New Zealand batting for quite a while.

Brushing away the concerns on Williamson, Watling believes the New Zealand skipper is bound to have off days and it is the responsibility of the team to step up.

"Kane's going to have poor Tests, everyone's going to have poor Tests. That's cricket," he said.

"We have to be better as a unit, build partnerships and take them really deep. We saw that in Dunedin and it put them under pressure."

The third and final Test will kick-off in Hamilton on 25th March with South Africa claiming a 1-0 unassailable lead following their win in Wellington.

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