By Nishad Pai Vaidya
Dec 28, 2013
South Africa went into tea on Day Three of the second Test against India at 267 for four. Jacques Kallis was unbeaten on 61 in what is his farewell Test and would be eyeing a big score to make the occasion special. The day was made for Kallis as he took guard after lunch. He was determined to make the occasion a big one as the crowd at Durban waited for him to get to his milestone.
It was AB de VIlliers who set the stage alive with some fantastic batting. He quickly moved on to his fifty and was pouncing at every opportunity to score. He got closer to that mark with a cracking cover-drive of Shami. It was a shot that had authority written all over it and a testament to De Villier’s quality.
Kallis too got into his act with a cover-drive off Ishant Sharma for a four. Every run scored by him was cheered by the crowd as they wanted him to finish off on a high. And, after some time, Kallis looked in the zone to do well. He was moving well and getting his feet in the right position. There was only once scare though. As De Villiers dabbed Zaheer to the leg-side, Kallis ran towards the striker’s end. De Villiers hadn’t even started and had to put in the dive as the throw came in at the other end.
After getting to his half century, De Villiers continued his good work and was keeping the scoreboard ticking. However, Ravindra Jadeja was always in the mix as he continued to turn it away from the right-handers. Having persisted with the line around the off-stump, he finally had his reward when de Villiers edged one to Murali Vijay at first skip. De Villiers had to return for 74. It was the end of a 127-run partnership.
Meanwhile, Kallis got closer to his half century and achieved the mark by driving Jadeja through the off-side for a for a four. There was a huge round of applause as his teammates also stood up. He took his helmet off, wiped his forehead and raised his bat to acknowledge the crowd.
Jadeja continued to get purchase and Dhoni held the new ball back to persist with him. JP Duminy started well by essaying a few fluent strokes through the off-side to pick boundaries.
India 334 (Murali Vijay 97, Cheteshwar Pujara 70, Virat Kohli 46, Ajinya Rahane 51*; Dale Steyn 6 for 100, Morne Morkel 3 for 50) lead South Africa 276 for 4 (Graeme Smith 47, Alviro Petersen 62, AB de Villiers 74, Jacques Kallis 61*; Ravindra Jadeja 3 for 77) by 67 runs.
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