West Indies, South Africa share honours on opening day
by CricketArchive Staff Reporter
DateLine: 10th June 2010
No play was possible in the morning session as the overnight rain and persistent drizzle made it next to impossible. After many false starts which included umpires walking out several times when the skies cleared only for the heavens to open up a minute later. Finally the match officials decided to take an early lunch and finally when the skies cleared it was determined that 47 overs would be possible in the day's play.
Graeme Smith had the luck with the spin of the coin and he had no hesitation in electing to bat first. The opening bowlers, Rampaul and Pascal, was a perfect study in contract as the former was on more than one occasion erratic while the latter looked to attack the stumps. After a circumspect start, Smith and Petersen began to up the tempo of the scoring. For the first 10 overs of the match it seemed that the South Africans held the upper hand but after the introduction of Bravo and Benn into the attack the runs almost dried up.
Bravo and Benn located the right line and length to trouble both the openers with the latter getting some alarming turn. Smith and Petersen were successful in taking the South African side to lunch without losing any wickets but it was after tea that things began to pear shape for the visitors. After tea, Petersen survived a huge shout for leg before thanks to UDRS. The on-field umpire gave the decision in favour of the batsman but Gayle decided to challenge it. Due to inconclusive evidence the batsman got the benefit of the doubt.
Shillingford finally got the breakthrough for the Windies as he had Smith caught at slip of a sharp spinning off break. Amla who has being in the form of his life made just 2 as he was caught at slip of an accurate Benn. Shillingford made his debut more memorable as he trapped Petersen leg before with an arm ball to reduce the South Africans to 68 for 3. Smith sensing that the light is deteriorating fast decided to send in Paul Harris and the nightwatchman did well to stay at the crease when the umpires called the players in when the light faded for the umpteenth time.
South Africa at end of the day's play was 70 for the loss of three wickets with Kallis and Harris at the crease.