Hashim Amla is at crease in first home Test as captain © Getty Images (File Photo)
Hashim Amla is at crease in first home Test as captain © Getty Images (File Photo)

Dec 17, 2014

West Indies rattled South Africa with three timely strikes in the first session of the first Test at centurion. Kemar Roach was the pick of the West Indies bowlers with two wickets to his credit. South Africa are 102 for three at lunch.

West Indies may have momentarily begun to rue their decision to insert South Africa as their bowlers failed to utilize the early movement on offer from a surface that is quickly beginning to flatten out. The decision to bowl was probably influenced by the rain in lead up to the game, which was expected to spice up an otherwise benign surface. Jerome Taylor began nervously, straying onto Alviro Petersen’s pads from the outset. A flurry of boundaries allowed Petersen to find his groove early into the innings. Sheldon Cottrell, playing only his second Test match didn’t cover himself in glory either, bowling on both sides of the wicket. South Africa scored at an astonishing run-rate in the first 10 overs on day one of the Test.

The introduction of Kemar Roach restored some sanity into proceedings. Roach appeared the most threatening of the West Indies bowlers,as he drew first blood for the visitors. The departure of Petersen seemed to have settled the nerves of the West Indies as they scrambled back into the game with the wicket of Dean Elgar immediately after. Sheldon Cottrell accounted for his wicket off an apparently innocuous delivery that Elgar guided into the hands of the gully fieldsman. Subsequent to the fall of Elgar’s wicket the visitors were all over South Africa like a bad rash.

Faf du Plessis was next to go, snapped up by the best bowler on show; Roach, for a duck. At the end of the first session fortunes had suddenly fluctuated as the West Indies find themselves in a position of Ascendency. South Africa’s best batsmen Ab de Villiers and Amla looked in good touch as they took their team to lunch in a slightly wobbly position. The visitors will strive to make inroads early into the post lunch session or risk the game quickly slipping from their grasp.

Earlier South Africa handed out a debut to Stiaan Van Zyl, who was in the squad in place of the injured JP Duminy. Ironically it was Duminy who handed him his Test cap. South Africa have opted for a four pronged pace attack, with Kyle Abbott getting a game. West Indies on the other hand resisted the same temptation by picking Sulieman Benn as a spin bowling option in addition to three seamers.

Brief Scores:

South Africa 102 for 3 ( A Petersen 27, D Elgar 28; K Roach 2 for 16, S Cottrell 1 for 30 ) vs West Indies

Full Scorecard

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