Philander strikes for SA

2014-12-19 13:02
Vernon Philander (AFP)

Pretoria - Vernon Philander picked up two wickets as a controversial review decision soured an otherwise solid morning for West Indies, who went to lunch on 110 for two on day three of the opening Test against South Africa on Friday.

The tourists are still 442 runs behind the Proteas first innings total of 552-5 declared and will resume after the interval with Leon Johnson on 27 and Marlon Samuels on six.

South Africa started the morning with injury worries that forced 48-year-old bowling coach Allan Donald to don his whites as wicketkeeper Quinton de Kock rolled his ankle in the warm-up and Faf du Plessis was taken to hospital with stomach cramps.

AB de Villiers provided a readymade replacement for De Kock, but the Proteas were forced to use both substitute fielders, leaving Donald a spectator on the sidelines contemplating a return to Test cricket almost 13 years after his retirement.

While the thought of that brought some amusement, nobody in the West Indies camp was laughing after an excellent opening stand of 72 was broken in controversial circumstances by third umpire Paul Reiffel of Australia.

Philander tucked up left-handed opener Devon Smith with a ball into his ribs and De Villiers took the catch behind the wicket.

Umpire Billy Bowden ruled there was no edge on the bat, while replays showed the ball had brushed Smith's thigh.

South Africa sent the decision to the third umpire though and a mystery spike on the Snickometer after the ball had passed the bat attracted the interest of Reiffel as he overturned Bowden's decision and sent Smith back to the changeroom for 35.

The tourists, who had looked relatively untroubled on a flat wicket, then lost their other opener Kraigg Brathwaite as he steered Philander to Hashim Amla at first slip after he had scored 34.

Philander, the slowest of South Africa's pace quartet, looked the most menacing with figures of two for 19 in nine overs.

Read more on:    proteas  |  vernon philander  |  cricket

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