South Africa v Sri Lanka, 3rd Test, Cape Town, 2nd day January 4, 2012

Cuddles for Kallis in batsmen renaissance

ESPNcricinfo presents the Plays of the Day from the second day of the third Test between South Africa and Sri Lanka at Cape Town

Chance of the day
Sri Lanka only had to wait until the third over of the day to get some luck but they wasted it almost as quickly as it came. Dhammika Prasad got one to nip away and take Jacques Kallis' outside edge. Mahela Jayawardene, who was at second slip, had to react quickly and reach low to his left to pouch it. He managed to get a thumb to the ball but only helped it on its path to the third-man boundary. Jayawardene had a second opportunity to get take a catch off Kallis ten overs later, when Angelo Matthews induced the outside edge. The chance was a tough one and flew between keeper and slip before Jayawardene could react.

Milestone of the day
Kallis waited 15 years before scoring his first double-century in Tests, a feat he achieved against India in Centurion last year. But it only took 13 months and 12 innings for him to notch up a second, at his home ground in Cape Town. Instead of a classic drive or pulverising pull, it came with a dab down to point and a well-run couple. The celebration that followed was a classic. Kallis leapt in the air, waving his bat and gesturing emphatically to the changing room. As he did when he brought up his century on the first day, Kallis turned a full 360 degrees and acknowledged every part of the crowd, who were on their feet. Long-time friend Mark Boucher had the camera out in the dressing room to capture an unforgettable moment for the man long acknowledged as South Africa's best cricketer.

Cricket-tragic stat of the day
After the thrill of the bowler's year in 2011, the tables were bound to turn in favour of batsmen at some point. In the New Year's Tests at the moment, they have. With milestones being crossed by South Africa's batsmen, one of the more obscure ones was achieved when Jacques Rudolph worked a short ball to fine leg, to take South Africa to 483 for 4. It carried them past Australia's overnight total of 482 for 4 against India in Sydney.

Shot of the day
AB de Villiers and Rudolph took 87 runs off the last 10 overs South Africa faced. They played audaciously throughout: cutting, pulling, scooping and lashing, and in that period de Villiers played the shot of the day. He backed away to Rangana Herath and lofted a back-foot drive towards the cover boundary. He executed the shot from an incredible angle, adding to his already impressive repertoire of strokes.

Affection of the day
No one was happier to see Kallis' achievements than his girlfriend, Shamone Jardim, who enjoyed every run from the WAGS box. She arrived on day two proudly wearing a t-shirt that read "I [heart] my bf" and a cardboard cut-out of the man himself to keep her company through the day. When the television cameras panned to her, with South Africa in the field, she played along and pouted up to the paper Kallis for the big screen. The image had the stadium in giggles and Kallis blushing on the park, so much that de Villiers rushed over to envelope him in an embrace.

Firdose Moonda is ESPNcricinfo's South Africa correspondent

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