South Africa Wrap Up Big Victory Inside Four Days
South Africa 352 & 206-4 dec. (Smith 90) beat
West Indies 102 (Steyn 5-29) & 293 (Gayle 73) by 163 runs
First Test, day four, Trinidad
South Africa wrapped up a comprehensive 163-run win over the West Indies having taken the extra half-hour on day four of the first Test in Trinidad.
They declared before lunch on 206 for four after Graeme Smith made 90 to set the home side 457 to win and they never threatened to either surpass that target, or see out six sessions to save the game as they were dismissed for 293.
However, they were reduced to 194 for seven before their last three wickets put on 99 runs but despite a committed lower-order rearguard effort, it merely delayed the inevitable.
Sulieman Benn made a pugnacious career-best of 42 in 55 balls, Shane Shillingford made 27 and Ravi Rampaul was unbeaten on 18 when the new ball saw Nelon Pascal bowled by Dale Steyn for 11.
The day began with the South Africans on 155 for two and they batted until after Smith was bowled round his legs by left-arm spinner Benn. Jacques Kallis was trapped in front by the same bowler for 40 and he finished with three for 74 when the innings was closed with AB de Villiers on 20 and Ashwell Prince on 16.
Just like in the West Indies' first innings, which mustered just 102 runs, South Africa struck quickly with the new ball as Morne Morkel had Travis Dowlin trapped in front for one, Brendan Nash (13) was caught by mark Mark Boucher off Steyn and Shivnarine Chanderpaul was caught by de Villiers off Kallis for 15.
Chris Gayle, who made 73 in 105 balls and Narsingh Deonarine, who hit 23, fought hard before Gayle was also trapped in front by Morkel, who continued his excellent game, and Deonarine was trapped in front by Steyn.
Dwayne Bravo struck 49 in 74 balls with four fours and two sixes before left-arm spinner Paul Harris had him caught by Prince and left-arm quick Lonwabo Tsotsobe then picked up his first Test wicket when Denesh Ramdin (9) was also caught by de Villiers.
Then came the West Indies' late rally, ended in slightly unpredictable fashion when Graeme Smith threw the ball to occasional off-spinner Alviro Petersen, who had Benn trapped in front with his fifth ball.
With that, chances of even taking the game into a final day rapidly faded and South Africa ensured that a swift end was brought to proceedings in ruthless fashion.
Steyn backed up his first-innings five-wicket haul with three for 65, Morkel impressed by taking two for 91, Harris returned two for 91 and there was a wicket apiece for Kallis, Tsotsobe and Harris.
The second Test begins in Saint Kitts on 18th June.
© Cricket World 2010