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Sunday, November 28, 2004

Cricket: India v. SA. 2nd Test - 1st Day's Play

Category: Misc Cricket

South Africa’s cricket tour of India in Nov., Dec. 2004.
2nd Test played at Eden Gardens, Kolkata.
End of the 1st Day’s Play.

South Africa was 227 for 5 at the end of the 1st day’s play of the 2nd test at Eden Gardens, Kolkata.

Jacques Kallis was unbeaten on 103 with de Bruyn giving him company.
Irfan and Zaheer started the day’s proceedings with a bang, sending the South African openers back to the pavilion with less than 20 on board. Greame Smith was caught behind off Irfan and first test match centurion Andrew Hall was also caught by wicket keeper Dinesh Karthik of the bowling of Zaheer Khan.

Jack Rudolph and Jacques Kallis steadied the innings and took the score past 100. Zaheer bowled Rudolph after lunch. Debutant Hashim Amla was bowled by Irfan, a peach of a delivery - pitching on the leg, moving towards the off, squaring him up and knocking back the off-stump. Boeta Dippenar didn’t last long and snicked an Irfan outswinger to Dinesh Karthik, and South Africa were 182 for five.

Zander de Bruyn survived a strong caught behind appeal of Harbhajan, then settled down and played sensibly to give Jacques Kallis the support to complete his century. It was his first century versus India, and it came at the Eden Gardens.

South Africa’s batting was dull and defensive. The Eden Gardens has a fast outfield, and we’ve seen a lot of runs being scored on the first day. However, the South Africans played safe and played the waiting game. The score of 227-5 in 80 overs is an indication of their defensive approach. They entered the game with a defensive mindset and the loss of two early wickets gave them a setback, and Kallis and Rudolph consolidated from there on at a slow pace.

Tomorrow’s play will be interesting. If we can get them all out before lunch under 300 it will be a job well done.

Irfan and Zaheer shared the wickets. Irfan, who bowled superbly, took three and Zaheer took the other two. Kumble and Harbhajan went wicketless. Harbhajan was distinctly unlucky not to have got a caught behind decision in his favour.

Irfan Pathan is a fantastic bowler. It is a joy to watch him bowl. The ball that got Hashim Amla clean bowled was a gem. Irfan from left arm over the wicket to right-handed Hashim Amla, the ball pitched on the leg and middle, curved towards the left (right of the batsman), beat the bat when the batsman went on the back-foot, and took the off-stump out of the ground. Well-bowled Irfan!

Score: 2nd Test. End of the 1st Day’s play.
South Africa.....227 for 5 v. India.