NZ back in contention

Johannesburg, May 6 :

A five-wicket haul by fast bowler Chris Martin and an improved second innings batting performance gave New Zealand a chance to save the series on the second day of the third and final Test against South Africa here on Saturday.

Martin took 5-37 as South Africa were bowled out for 186 in reply to New Zealand’s 119. New Zealand were 214/6 in the second innings at the close, a lead of 147. South African Jacques Kallis took two wickets, taking his Test career total to 200. Kallis and former West Indian Sir Garfield Sobers are the only players to have scored 8,000 runs and taken 200 wickets in Tests.

New Zealand need to win the Test to share the series and to keep their fifth place on the ICC rankings. If sixth-ranked South Africa win the series, they will swop places with the Kiwis.

New Zealand quickly lost Jamie How at the start of their second innings and were 40/2 when Kallis dismissed Michael Papps.

But captain Stephen Fleming (37), Scott Styris (42) and Nathan Astle (45) led a solid batting effort on a pitch which continued to help the bowlers, although playing easier than it had in the morning.

On the first day, New Zealand started the slide which led to their low total and on Saturday it was South Africa’s turn to collapse as they lost their last six wickets for 53 runs. Only a hard-hit 32 not out off 19 balls by Shaun Pollock prevented a complete rout of the South African lower order batting.