New Zealand Take Small Lead Over South Africa
South Africa 238 (Amla 62, Smith 53) v
New Zealand 243-9 (McCullum 48)
First Test, Dunedin, day two
New Zealand are poised to claim a slender first-innings lead over South Africa in the first Test in Wellington after they closed day two on 243 for nine replying to the Proteas' score of 238.
Chris Martin finished with four wickets to bowl the South Africans out before three New Zealanders fell just short of half-centuries in an intriguing battle.
Brendon McCullum (48), Daniel Vettori (46) and Ross Taylor (44) all came close to half-centuries but four wickets from Vernon Philander kept New Zealand under pressure.
A brace of wickets from Morne Morkel and one apiece for Dale Steyn, Imran Tahir and Jacques Kallis ensured that New Zealand's lead will likely be a small one, setting up a one-innings shootout with plenty of time in the game remaining.
South Africa resumed the day on 191 for seven and although Jacques Rudolph battled to 52 in 99 balls before being the penultimate man to be dismissed.
Philander (22), Morkel (13 not out) and Tahir (10) added useful runs before Martin returned four for 56 and Doug Bracewell two for 52.
New Zealand then made a steady start to their reply before losing Rob Nicol to Philander for six and Martin Guptill to Morkel for 16.
McCullum and Taylor then added 65 runs untli within ten runs of each other, both were dismissed. McCullum was caught and bowled by Tahir and Taylor was caught behind off Morkel.
Kane Williamson departed quickly for 11 but it was left to Vettori, along with Kruger van Wyk, who batted well on his debut to make 36, as well as Bracewell, who scored 25, to carry New Zealand past the 200 mark and towards parity.
Philander hit back for South Africa, adding the scalps of Vettori and Tim Southee (0) to that of Williamson but New Zealand edged ahead with Trent Boult unbeaten on eight while Chris Martin, unbeaten at the other end, has yet to face a delivery.
Hashim Amla (62) and Graeme Smith (53) led the way for South Africa on a rain-hit opening day before New Zealand fought back.
© Cricket World 2012