Johannesburg - Graeme Smith has hit a battling half-century as the Proteas made a
strong start to their first innings after bowling out India for 280 on
the second day of the first Test at the Wanderers Stadium on Thursday.
Smith was on 62 not out in a South African total of 118 for one as the hosts moved within 162 runs of India's total.
and Hashim Amla (30 not out) shared an unbeaten second wicket
partnership of 81 after Alviro Petersen was leg before wicket to Ishant
Sharma for 21 in India's only success during the afternoon.
Philander and Morne Morkel ripped through India's lower order batsmen
as the tourists lost their last five wickets for 16 runs at the start of
Resuming at 255 for five in heavily overcast conditions
after overnight and early morning rain, Ajinkya Rahane and Mahendra
Singh Dhoni made cautious progress against tight bowling from Dale
Steyn, Philander and Morkel.
Only nine runs were scored, including
three leg byes and just three scoring shots, before Morkel made the
breakthrough with the last ball of the ninth over of the day when Dhoni
was caught behind for 19.
Four balls later, Rahane went the same
way against Philander for 47. Zaheer Khan went back on his stumps and
was palpably leg before wicket to the next ball.
Ishant Sharma and
Mohammed Shami were bowled by Philander and Morkel respectively, both
without scoring, leaving Ravichandran Ashwin stranded on 11 not out.
finished with four for 61 after taking three for six in six overs on
Thursday and Morkel took three for 34 in 23 overs.
captain Smith seldom looked assured on a pitch which seemed to be
offering more assistance to the bowlers than on the first day.
had some awkward moments against Indian left-arm opening bowler Zaheer
Khan, who has dismissed him six times in Tests and was dropped at first
slip by Ashwin off Khan when he had 19.
But, typically, Smith's concentration never wavered as he reached his half-century off 98 balls with nine fours.
India: 280 (V. Kohli 119, A. Rahane 47; V. Philander 4-61,
M. Morkel 3-34)
South Africa: 118-1 (G. Smith 62 not out; I. Sharma