India take slender lead over SA

Cape Town, January 4:

Anil Kumble took four wickets as India squeezed out a potentially crucial 41-run first innings lead on the third day of the third and final Test on Thursday.

India successfully employed strangulation tactics as South Africa were bowled out for 373 shortly before the close, with veteran leg-spinner Kumble taking 4-117.

South Africa had three productive partnerships. Three key wickets fell during the afternoon after India delayed taking the second new ball. Sachin Tendulkar made a key breakthrough when he had Jacques Kallis caught on the midwicket boundary.

Kumble bowled Ashwell Prince in the next over and Virender Sehwag struck a third blow to South Africa’s hopes when Herschelle Gibbs was given out caught at short leg. Gibbs was unlucky to be given out by Daryl Harper as it seemed the ball had missed his bat and gone to Wasim Jaffer off his thigh pad. Kallis (54) and Prince (26) had put on 83 for the fourth wicket and were slowly regaining the ascendancy when India struck.

It was India’s second double strike of the day. South African captain Graeme Smith was out for 94 in the morning and was soon followed by Hashim Amla (63). The pair put on 159 for the second wicket.

Mark Boucher (50) and Shaun Pollock put on 69 for the seventh wicket and eventually forced Indian captain Rahul Dravid to call for the second new ball after 115 overs. It soon brought the wicket of Pollock. South Africa resumed on 144-1 with Smith and Amla pushing the score along steadily before Kumble had Smith caught by a diving Sehwag at short midwicket. Shanthakumaran Sreesanth came on to bowl and had Amla (63) caught by wicketkeeper Dinesh Karthik.

It was Sreesanth’s 18th wicket in three matches, equalling the record for an Indian bowler in a series against South Africa. The record was set by Kumble in 1992/93 and equalled by Javagal Srinath in 1996/97.


INDIA — 1st Innings: 414

S AFRICA — 1st Innings (overnight: 144-1)

G Smith c Sehwag b Kumble 94

H Amla c Karthik b Sreesanth 63

J Kallis c Patel b Tendulkar 54

A Prince b Kumble 26

H Gibbs c Jaffer b Sehwag 7

M Boucher c Karthik b Patel 50

S Pollock c Ganguly b Khan 31

P Harris not out 11

D Steyn b Kumble 1

M Ntini lbw b Kumble 0

Extras: 35 (b7, lb13, nb14, w1)

Total: 373

FoW: 1-14, 2-173, 3-177, 4-260, 5-260, 6-281, 7-350, 8-372, 9-373

India bowling: Khan 20-3-74-1, Sreesanth 24-9-58-2, Kumble 42.3-6-117-4, Patel 20-5-43-1, Sehwag 12-0-31-1, Tendulkar 10-2-30-1