Maestro stands but India conquered

South Africa were always in control after winning the toss and sending India to bat after rain delay on the first day.


Afp December 20, 2010

CENTURION: Fast-bowlers Morne Morkel and Dale Steyn took a wicket apiece as South Africa completed victory by an innings and 25 runs on the fifth day of the first Test against India.

Sachin Tendulkar was left stranded on 111 not out as India were bowled out for 459, losing their last two wickets for five runs in 35 balls. Morkel dismissed Sreesanth before Steyn had last man Jaidev Unadkat caught at gully to give South Africa a 1-0 lead in the three-match series.

South Africa were always in control after winning the toss and sending India in to bat after rain delayed the start on the first day. Morkel and Steyn had ripped through India’s batting, dismissing the world’s number one ranked Test team for 136 in their first innings.

South Africa piled up 620 for four declared, with Jacques Kallis hitting a maiden Test double century and AB de Villiers racing to South Africa’s fastest Test century.

Dhoni lashes out at bowlers

India captain MS Dhoni bemoaned his bowlers’ failure to dismiss South Africa. “The wicket was very different to the first day, but we’ve played on flatter tracks,” said Dhoni. “To win a Test match you need to take 20 wickets.” Dhoni said it was a problem that South Africa had been able to score at a rate of 4.76 runs an over. “If you’re not getting wickets you’ve to stop the batsmen scoring briskly.”

Faced with a first innings deficit of 484, India put up a much improved performance in the second innings. Gautam Gambhir and Virender Sehwag both made half-centuries before Tendulkar and Dhoni put on 172 for the seventh wicket to ensure that the match would extend into a fifth day.

Tendulkar went on to record his 50th Test century. India resumed at 454 for eight, still trailing by 30 runs. Morkel struck with the 21st ball of the day when Sreesanth edged a lifting delivery to AB de Villiers at third slip. Unadkat could only fend a lifting ball from Steyn to gully where Ashwell Prince completed the catch.

Smith wants more from team

South African captain Graeme Smith said his team wanted to put more pressure on the tourists after what he described as “a pretty dominant performance.” “We really want to build on this now,” said the captain. “We’re a very motivated team. We want to go Durban, prepare well and play well.” The second Test starts in Durban on Sunday where South Africa added batsman JP Duminy and left-arm fast-bowler Wayne Parnell to their squad.

Kallis, Morkel up to third

NEWS DESK. Jacques Kallis and Morne Morkel were ranked number three according to the latest International Cricket Council (ICC) rankings. Kallis and Morkel reached the third rank in the latest batting and bowling rankings respectively. Other high ranked South African batsmen are AB de Villiers (5), Hashim Amla (9) and Graeme Smith (12).

Published in The Express Tribune, December 21st, 2010.

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