Centurion - Graeme Smith and Alviro Petersen shared a century opening stand as South Africa made a strong reply to India's 136 all out on the second day of the first Test at SuperSport Park on Friday.
South African captain Smith made 62 before he was caught behind off Harbhajan Singh in the last over before lunch. The home team were 111 for one at the break. Petersen was unbeaten on 45.
It took South African fast bowler Morne Morkel just three balls to wrap up India's first innings at the start of the day. Morkel trapped Indian captain Mahendra Singh Dhoni leg before wicket for 33 as India failed to add to their overnight total of 136 for nine.
Although Sree Sreesanth conceded six runs in the first over of the South African innings, including a wide, only three runs were scored in the next five overs as Sreesanth and Ishant Sharma bowled steadily, while the batsman were content to draw the sting from the attack on a pitch still helping the bowlers.
The first fifty partnership of the match took 81 minutes and 96 balls of careful batting but the second fifty came at a run a ball as the batsmen started to take control.
South African captain Smith looked in fine form as he reached his personal half-century off 72 balls when he cut off-spinner Harbhajan for his ninth boundary.
Harbhajan conceded 32 runs off his first four overs, including a swept six by Petersen off the first ball he faced from the spin bowler. But the veteran spin bowler made the breakthrough when Smith tried one cut too many and edged the ball to Dhoni.
Earlier, the tall Morkel finished with Test-best figures of five for 20 from 18.4 overs when Dhoni walked across his stumps and was palpably lbw, scarcely waiting for umpire Ian Gould?s decision before starting to walk back to the dressing room.
It was Morkel's fourth five wicket haul and bettered his five for 50 against Bangladesh in Mirpur in 2007/08.
In contrast to the first day, when rain delayed the start by four and a half hours, play started in warm weather under a cloudless sky, although there was some cloud build-up during the morning.
India first innings (o/n 136/9):
G Gambhir c Harris b Morkel 5 (43b)
V Sehwag c Amla b Steyn 0 (3b)
R Dravid lbw b Morkel 14 (42b, 2x4)
S Tendulkar lbw b Steyn 36 (34b, 8x4)
VVS Laxman b Steyn 7 (20b, 1x4)
S Raina c Prince b Kallis 1 (3b)
MS Dhoni lbw b Morkel 33 (50b, 2x4, 2x6)
H Singh run out Petersen/Boucher 27 (25b, 4x4, 1x6)
I Sharma c Kallis b Morkel 0 (2b)
S Sreesanth c Steyn b Morkel 0 (8b)
J Unadkat not out 1 (5b)
Extras: (6lb, 3nb, 3w) 12
Total: (all out) 136 -- 38.4 overs
Fall of wickets: 1-1 (Sehwag 2.1 ov), 2-24 (Gambhir 12.6), 3-27 (Dravid 14.4), 4-66 (Laxman 22.2), 5-67 (Raina 23.1), 6-71 (Tendulkar 24.4), 7-110 (Singh 32.1), 8-110 (Sharma 32.3), 9-116 (Sreesanth 34.5) 10-136 (Dhoni 38.4)
Bowling: Steyn 10-1-34-3 (1w), Morkel 12.4-5-20-5 (3nb), Tsotsobe 9-2-50-0 (1w), Kallis 6-1-20-1 (1w), Harris 1-0-6-0
South Africa first innings:
G Smith c Dhoni b Harbhajan 62 (87b, 11x4)
A Petersen not out 45 (74b, 5x4, 1x6)
H Amla not out 0 (3b)
Extras: (1lb, 2nb, 1w) 4
Total: (for 1 wkt) 111 -- 27 overs
Fall of wickets: 1-111 (Smith 26.3)
Bowling: Sreesanth 8-1-32-0 (1nb, 1w), Sharma 8-2-20-0, Unadkat 6-1-26-0 (1nb), Harbhajan 5-1-32-1