Sachin Tendulkar played a watchful innings as India dug themselves out of early trouble before bad light brought an early end to the second day of the second Test against South Africa at Kingsmead here on Wednesday.
India were 103 for three in reply to South Africa’s 328 when the stoppage came half an hour after tea. Tendulkar, who escaped a straightforward catching chance, was unbeaten on 46.
India lost their first three wickets for 61 and it could have been worse if South African captain Graeme Smith had caught Tendulkar when the total was 69 with the batsman on 21.
With India holding a 1-0 lead in the three-match series, Tendulkar and VVS Laxman looked determined to ensure their team would earn at least a draw. They batted cautiously as the light deteriorated to add an unbeaten 42 for the fourth wicket.
Tendulkar batted for 135 minutes and faced 89 balls. Careful defence was mixed with judicious stroke selection and he hit eight fours.
Laxman was with Tendulkar for 69 minutes and faced 49 deliveries, hitting a single boundary in scoring 10 not out.
It was a frustrating day for both teams. India were unable to finish off South Africa’s first innings early in the day to give themselves a platform to dominate the match, while South Africa clawed their way back into contention, adding 71 for their last two wickets and then striking hard at the Indian top order, only to be thwarted by the weather conditions.
Tendulkar’s let-off came when India’s master batsman edged Andrew Hall to first slip but Smith could not hold a waist-high offering to his left.
By contrast, AB de Villiers held two good catches at second slip as India made a poor start to their innings after South Africa, led by century-maker Ashwell Prince, kept India in the field for an hour and a half at the start of the day.
De Villiers held his first catch, leaping high and to his right, when Virender Sehwag was out first ball, slashing at Andre Nel. Then he had to go low to hold an edged drive by Wasim Jaffer off Makhaya Ntini. Jaffer made 26, his highest score of the tour.
In between Indian captain Rahul Dravid was leg before to Nel for 11 when he was trapped on his crease by a ball which slanted in. Nel bowled impressively to take two for 26 on another hot, steamy day at Kingsmead.
Prince, who was 98 not out overnight, top-scored for South Africa with 121 as the hosts kept the Indians in the field for an hour and a half earlier in the day, advancing their total from an overnight 257 for eight.
Shanthakumaran Sreesanth was India’s most successful bowler with four for 109.
The left-handed Prince reached his fifth Test century in the third over of the morning when he drove Sreesanth through the covers for four.
Prince found capable support from new cap Morne Morkel, a right-arm bowler and left-handed batsman, as the pair added 39 for the ninth wicket.
It took the second new ball to break the stand when Prince, immediately after hitting a scorching cover drive off Sreesanth, drove at a wide ball and edged a high catch to Laxman at second slip. Prince batted for 316 minutes, faced 212 balls and hit 16 fours.
Morkel and last man Makhaya Ntini added another 32 before Anil Kumble wrapped up the innings when he trapped Ntini leg before for 16 with a straight ball that hurried through. Kumble finished with three for 62.
The tall Morkel, who looked comfortable at the crease and played some fluent off-side strokes, was unbeaten on 31, made off 52 balls with three fours.
South Africa won toss
South Africa 1st inns (overnight 257-8)
*G C Smith c Tendulkar b Khan 5
A B de Villiers c Tendulkar b Sreesanth 9
H M Amla lbw b Khan 1
H H Gibbs c Dhoni b Sreesanth 63
A G Prince c Laxman b Sreesanth 121
†M V Boucher b Sreesanth 53
S M Pollock c Sehwag b Singh 11
A J Hall lbw b Kumble 0
A Nel b Kumble 0
M Morkel not out 31
M Ntini lbw b Kumble 16
Extras (lb3, w1, nb14) 18
Total (all out, 91.3 overs) 328
Fall: 1-8, 2-13, 3-28, 4-122, 5-222, 6-256, 7-257, 8-257, 9-296
Bowling: Khan 23-7-83-2 (4nb, 1w); Sreesanth 24-4-109-4 (3nb); Singh 13-1-60-1 (3nb); Kumble 28.3-1-62-3 (2nb); Ganguly 3-1-11-0 (2nb)
India 1st inns
W Jaffer c de Villiers b Ntini 26
V Sehwag c de Villiers b Nel 0
*R Dravid lbw b Nel 11
S R Tendulkar not out 46
V V S Laxman not out 10
Extras (lb6, w1, nb3) 10
Total (3 wkts, 38.4 overs) 103
To bat: S C Ganguly, †M S Dhoni, A Kumble, Z Khan, S Sreesanth, V R V Singh
Fall: 1-5, 2-35, 3-61
Bowling: Nel 12-2-26-2; Ntini 8-4-12-1; Morkel 6-0-33-0 (3nb, 1w); Pollock 8.4-6-6-0; Hall 4-0-20-0
Test debut: Morne Morkel (South Africa)
Umpires: Asad Rauf (Pakistan) and M R Benson (England). TV umpire: I L Howell. Match referee: R S Mahanama (Sri Lanka)
First Test match: December 15-18 Johannesburg, India won by 123 runs
Third & final Test: January 2-6, Cape Town
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Post InfoThis entry was posted on Thursday, December 28th, 2006 and is filed under General.
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