The West Indies claimed two big wickets to reduce South Africa to 313-5 at lunch on day three, reports Jon Cardinelli at Newlands.
The stage was certainly set for the Proteas to dominate at the start of the day’s play. The pitch was still very good for batting, Hashim Amla and AB de Villiers were at the crease, and the large crowd at Newlands was keenly anticipating an entertaining and convincing performance.
De Villiers obliged initially with several expansive strokes and reached the 50 mark off 70 balls. But after the 75th over, the West Indies complained about the state of the ball, and the umpires called for a change. The newer ball brought the visitors immediate success, with Jason Holder finding the edge of Amla’s bat and Denesh Ramdin pouching an important catch.
Temba Bavuma never looked comfortable, and was fortunate when a thick edge dropped short of second slip (the delivery was also called a no-ball). His luck didn’t last much longer. He was out the very next ball when he attempted to leave a Shannon Gabriel delivery and played it back on to his stumps.
Following the dismissal of Amla, the West Indies grew in confidence and bowled with more discipline. De Villiers assumed the role of the senior partner, and played more cautiously. The scoring rate dropped as a result.
The West Indies will feel that the first session on day three was theirs. They got rid of Amla, the man who cracked 208 in Centurion, and made further inroads through the dismissal of Bavuma.
That said, De Villiers is still at the crease with Stiaan van Zyl, another player who scored a ton in that first Test at Centurion. If the West Indies don’t strike early after lunch, this pair will set about building a lead.
West Indies 1st innings – 329 (Jermaine Blackwood 56, Leon Johnson 54, Dale Steyn 4-78, Simon Harmer 3-71)
South Africa 1st innings – 313-5 (AB de Villiers 84 not out, Faf du Plessis 68, Shannon Gabriel 2-64, Jason Holder 2-64)
South Africa trail by 16 runs