De Villiers scores gritty double ton

Updated: 15 April 2008 12:23 IST

AB de Villiers scored his first Test double as South Africa finished Day 2 of the Ahmedabad Test with a massive 418-run lead.

De Villiers scores gritty double ton

Ahmedabad:

AB de Villiers and Jacques Kallis feasted on some toothless Indian bowling to take South Africa to a position of invincibility in the Ahmedabad Test.

De Villiers scored his first Test double ton, Kallis went past Don Bradman's tally of 29 Test tons, and the visitors helped themselves to 494-7 before a light hailstorm halted the second day's proceedings.

South Africa now lead India by 418 runs. Having bowled India out for 76, they are now in a position to inflict a massive defeat on the hosts.

India's bowlers were clueless and their fielding patchy against the South African march. While they were unlucky to not have a couple of wickets in the first session, de Villiers didn't seem to have the slightest discomfort against pace or spin.

He and Kallis added 256 runs for the fifth wicket, a South African record for any wicket against India. De Villiers also surpassed Herchelle Gibbs' 197 to become his team's highest scorer against India.

Unlucky morning session

Kallis escaped being bowled when a ball he defended off Harbhajan Singh rolled into the stumps without dislodging the bails. Kallis was 61 at the time.

He was lucky again to not being given out leg-before to Sreesanth on 85. Replays suggested the ball was quite straight and that Billy Doctrove had erred in his ruling.

Three balls later, RP Singh failed to get back to the stumps to collect a throw that would have run de Villiers out on 89.

These incidents notwithstanding, Kallis was on 97 and de Villiers on 98 when the final over before lunch began. The latter played a naughty paddle sweep for four off Sourav Ganguly to go into lunch 102 not out.

More misery for bowlers

Immediately after lunch, Kallis cover drove Ganguly through cover to bring up his 30th Test century. The two matched each other stroke for stroke.

RP Singh and Irfan Pathan bowled without bite all noon, not once coming close to taking a wicket. Even against Anil Kumble and Harbhajan Singh, the batsmen used their feet to negate the spin and scored in boundaries by hitting over the field. There were no demons in the pitch. It looked great for batting, or at least, was being made to look good.

Sreesanth, unlucky to not have had Kallis, had the last word. Having had two fours picked off him in an over, Sreesanth got Kallis to chop an outswinger on to his stumps.

Mark Boucher prevented any further hiccups, and partnered de Villiers to take South Africa to tea 337 runs ahead. By this time, the game was headed for only one result.

Some respite in the evening

India managed to hold South Africa back with a couple of quick wickets in the final session. Kumble trapped Boucher as he played back to a googly. Soon after, Harbhajan trapped the left-handed Morne Morkel with a straighter one.
At the other end, de Villiers marched on confidently. The highlight of the innings was his big slog sweep of Harbhajan. The ball landed on the roof of the Motera Stadium and this is a big ground by any standards.

His double was brought up off the same bowler with a punch through extra cover for four.



Topics : Cricket Sreesanth
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