South Africa look set for huge first innings score (Tea report)

Friday, December 17, 2010

CENTURION - South Africa were on course for taking a huge lead in the first Test against India as they coasted to 236 for two at tea on the second day here Friday to lead by 100 runs.

The only wicket to fall in the second session was that of Alviro Petersen, who was dismissed by Harbhajan Singh (2-73), for a well-made 77.

South Africa, who bowled out India for a paltry 136 in the first innings, now lead by 100 runs with Hashim Amla batting on 50 and Jacques Kallis on 42.

None of the Indian bowlers made any impression on the South African batsmen, and it was barely a day after the hosts pacers wreaked havoc on the rain-curtailed opening day picking up nine wickets for 136 runs in just 39 overs. India also missed their pace spearhead Zaheer Khan, who is sitting out with a hamstring injury.

In the morning, fast bowler Morne Morkel took just three balls to wrap up the Indian innings by trapping captain Mahendra Singh Dhoni leg before wicket for 33. Morkel finished with Test-best figures of five for 20 from 18.4 overs.

Openers Graeme Smith (62) and Petersen gave South Africa a great start and they reached 111 for one at lunch.

Smith was in fine form and got to his half-century in style, a late cut off Harbhajan Singh racing away for a four. Two balls later, Smith again attacked Harbhajan, stepping out and driving the off-spinner for a four through mid-wicket. In the next over, Smith again swept Harbahajan for a four to the deep square leg boundary. Harbhajan, however, took revenge after he dismissed Smith in the next over, caught behind by Dhoni.

South Africa added 125 runs in the second session in 28 overs.

Petersen, who was batting on 45 at lunch, and Amla were involved in a 55-run stand.

Petersen, who hit nine fours and one six in 114 balls, got an inside edge on to the pad and Gautam Gambhir took a simple catch, giving Harbhajan his second wicket.

Kallis and Amla then raised 70 runs for the third wicket.

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