Lower Order Gets South Africa Up To 352

Lower Order Gets South Africa Up To 352
Lower Order Gets South Africa Up To 352
©REUTERS/Philip Brown (SOUTH AFRICA - Tags: SPORT CRICKET) Picture Supplied by Action Images

South Africa 352 (Boucher 69, de Villiers 68, Benn 5-120) v West Indies
First Test, Trinidad, day two

South Africa's lower order performed brilliantly with the bat to guide their side to a score of 352 all out at stumps on day two of the opening Test against the West Indies in Trinidad.

Left-arm spinner Sulieman Benn returned five for 120 as only one of the wickets to fall in the innings did not fall to a slow bowler but after resuming on 70 for three, South Africa can be satisfied with the way they rallied, particularly after losing nightwatchman Paul Harris and Jacques Kallis in the morning session.

Harris (10) hit an early six before an ugly shot saw him caught at cover by Shane Shillingford as Benn took his second wicket and soon after off-spinner Shillingford  had Kallis trapped in front for 28 to leave the tourists in more than a spot of bother at 107 for five.

The first substantial partnership of the day was put together by AB de Villiers (68) and Ashwell Prince (57) and the experienced pair shared 122 runs for the fifth wicket, batting through until lunch to keep their side afloat.

Both batsmen used their feet well to combat spinners Benn, Shillingford and Gayle, Prince hitting two fours and a six before he flicked Gayle's first delivery into the hands of Travis Dowlin at leg gulley.

Four overs later, de Villiers, who hit five fours, was also on his way, caught by Denesh Ramdin after he edged an attempted cut shot to a Benn delivery.

That brought Dale Steyn to the crease and despite a literally edgy start, he forged a crucial stand with Mark Boucher and some stubborn batting coupled with exciting strokeplay when they got the chance saw them add 86 for the eighth wicket.

Steyn was finally dismissed when he was stumped by Ramdin and Benn completed his five-wicket haul shortly after when Morne Morkel (2) was bowled via an inside edge.

Batting with debutant Lonwabo Tsotsobe at the other end, Boucher expanded his strokeplay after getting past his 33rd Test half-century and he was the last man to fall when he lofted Dwayne Bravo into the deep and Nelon Pascal, who had bowled well earlier in the day without reward, took a smart catch at deep long off.

Boucher faced 146 balls in all, hitting four fours and a six while Tsotsobe was left unbeaten on three.

Shillingford, also on debut, along with Pascal, returned three for 96.

The opening day's play was badly affected by rain and bad light and as a result only 34 overs of play were possible.

© Cricket World 2010