South Africa took a commanding first innings lead over Pakistan yesterday as Mark Boucher broke the world record for wicketkeeping dismissals on the third day of the first cricket Test.
South Africa established a 159-run lead on the first innings, and while Pakistan's spinners struck early in South Africa's second innings on a dicey wicket, South Africa finished the day at 76-3 for an overall lead of 235 runs.
First innings century-maker Jacques Kallis finished the day unbeaten on a patient 18 while Ashwell Prince was not out on 11.
Captain Graeme Smith (25) and Herschelle Gibbs (18) put on 41 runs for the first wicket before rookie Abdul Rehman (2-25) and Danish Kaneria (1-18) struck three times in rapid succession.
Rehman had Smith caught behind, then Hashim Amla was stumped for a duck, with replays showing his foot was slightly in the air when wicketkeeper Kamran Akmal dislodged the bails.
In between Rehman's double strike, Gibbs (18) was caught close to the wicket off a mistimed sweep.
In Pakistan's first innings, Boucher's stumping of Umar Gul was his 396th dismissal (378 catches, 18 stumpings) in his 103rd Test match, surpassing Australian wicketkeeper Ian Healy's tally of 395 dismissals (366 catches, 29 stumpings) in Test cricket.
Resuming at the overnight score of 127-5, Pakistan lost Rehman (9) in the morning session, caught behind off paceman Andre Nel, before captain Shoaib Malik and a recovered Salman Butt combined for an 84-run stand for the seventh wicket.
Butt had recovered from abdominal pains that prevented him opening Pakistan's first innings on Tuesday and forced him to hospital for around 11 hours.
Malik and Butt (24) dug in for two hours before both fell in the second session to left-arm spinner Paul Harris (5-73), who took his first five-wicket haul in Test matches.
Butt played a reckless cross-batted shot off his backfoot and was trapped LBW. Malik ran out of patience and was stumped after facing 170 balls in his three and a half hour knock. Malik, captain for the first time in Tests, also reached 1,000 Test runs in his 19th Test with a straight six off Harris.
Pakistan needed a further 13 runs to avoid the follow-on when Malik departed, but Kaneria and Gul took Pakistan past the follow-on total. Kaneria (26 not out) and Mohammad Asif (10) then put up a strong resistance, adding 32 for the last wicket and occupying the crease for more than an hour.
Sreesanth tantrums panned
India's media yesterday condemned fast bowler Shanthakumaran Sreesanth's on-field tantrums after he clashed with Australian batsmen, saying there was a "thin line between aggression and antics."
Sreesanth clashed repeatedly with the batsmen during Tuesday's second one-day international in Kochi and even appealed for a run-out against Andrew Symonds after the ball was ruled dead.
The bowler ran up to striker Brad Haddin's feet to collect a ball that bounced off the batsman's pad and eye-balled him inches from his nose. Non-striker Symonds left his crease to have a word with Sreesanth who promptly dislodged the bails and continued to appeal for a run-out even though umpire Suresh Shastri ruled it a "dead" ball.
India captain Mahendra Singh Dhoni prevented the situation from turning ugly by persuading Sreesanth to get on with the game, but local media were unimpressed.
"Sreesanth's on-field behavior made little sense," the Hindu newspaper wrote.
"There was little excuse for Sreesanth's exaggerated and provocative celebration when he, subsequently, had Symonds caught and bowled. He has [in the past] had his match-fees docked, been spoken to by umpires, but he does not seem to have learnt his lesson. He is so much the better paceman when his mind and body are in harmony. Once Sreesanth loses his cool, he is not the same force as a bowler," the Hindu wrote.
Sreesanth has been fined a few times in the past year, the latest for excessive appealing during the semi-final win over Australia at last month's Twenty20 world championships in South Africa.
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