South Africa have levelled the series!. What a nerve-wracking game! Andrew Hall gets them home. Congrats South Africa. Sreesanth is unhappy, storms off the field. Not at the South African celebration, which was, obviously, wild but at the decision. It went off the right shoulder. No edge. Banged in short, and at the offstump line, Sreesanth tries to withdraw his bat from the line. He does. Umpire Asad Rauf doesn't notice it. The cherry whistles past the blade, brushes the right shoulder and sails into Boucher's gloves. Game over.
What a tense battle! South Africa storm their way back into the series. They fought hard, not only the Indians but also the elements, and are now tasting a sweet win under a slightly overcast sky. The series is level. With all to play for at Capetown. We couldn't have asked for more.
Graeme Smith, at the post-match ceremony: " The adrenalin was pumping right at the end. we are over the moon .... the boys proved themselves. I thought the wicket was very good, we bowled outstandingly well.. "
Man-of-the-Match: Makhaya Ntini
Cheeky quote The presenter asks him how he bounced back after being off colour in the first Test. Ntini says, hold your breath, "I am always off colour!"
Ntini in a tv interview. "God was on our side. .... All of a sudden the sun came out. .. I went to the gym last evening. They asked me why am I going to gym, you got to bowl tomorrow. I said, 'That's why I am going to the gym. Need more power." What a champion performance from him.
Smith: "Thank goodness the sun came out in the afternoon and we could end up with a smile in the evening. It was a wicket where you needed to use short-pitched but be clever with it. We needed to bowl the full-length and bowl at the fourth, fifth stump [outside the offstump]. All in all it was a great Test match to watch and great Test match to play."
Certainly, it was a great match to watch. This is Sriram Veera, signing off. It was a pleasure bringing you the live action. Hope you enjoyed. The Capetown Test starts on January 2nd. Join us then.
Meanwhile please do read The Bulletin by Anand Vasu. "Tempers frayed, words were exchanged, short balls banged in and trenches dug as the Indian tail did its utmost to keep South Africa at bay long enough to give the fading light o the rest. But when Andrew Hall knocked over Sreesanth ....."
To continue reading please click here. Good bye and good luck and have a great new year!
attempted yorker, jabbed to mid-off
Nel gets the vital wicket. Banged it in short of length, it kicks up outside the offstump, and also holds its line. Zaheer hops up, gets squared-up as the ball straightens, pushes at it, bat away from the body, feet up in the air, and it flies to Hall at third slip who makes no mistake. All the fielders converge on Nel. He has never been so popular. Never has Zaheer been so disappointed. India lose their ninth wicket. South Africa are ever so close to that win. Just one wicket away.
Nel tries to trap him lbw. Lands a length-delivery on the offstump line, comes in with the angle, Zaheer is ready, doesn't thrust his left foot across, gets behind and defends it
full in length, just outside the offstump, out comes Zaheer's left foot, his head goes over the ball, he defends, pushes it out towards point.
outside offstump, left alone
oh ho! What a reply. Another full-pitched delivery, Sreesanth leans forward and drives it straight past the bowler. All along the ground. Both Sreesanth and Ntini exchange few words.
The game hurtles on to a thrilling climax. A inswinging yorker, just outside the offstump, Sreesanth drives but misses. The ball sails between the bat and the offstump, into Boucher's gloves. oohs and aahs from behind the stumps.
just short of the length, on the middle stump line, Sreesanth gets stoutly behind the line, defends.
banged in short of length, Sreesanth goes back, tries to punch it, and the ball evades the bat and strikes him on the righ arm. Pain. Ouch. Sreesanth calls for the physio. He is hurt. Meanwhile more time eaten up. The umpires now walk towards Sreesanth and the physio. Munaf Patel is out there with Gloster. The umpires have a close look. Gloster sprayed the magic spray. The camera pans out to South African dressing room. Mickey Arthur, the coach, is clearly unhappy. Smith, meanwhile, is still standing at slips. He has no words with the umpires. Just chewing his nails. Not much of it left. Another look at the meter. it is still 11. has to come down below 8. What a game. On a knife-edge.
Another look at the lightmeter by the umpires. It has dipped further. it is 11 now!
full, driven in the air and it falls short of the short-cover.
Another check at light meter. First time they did, two overs ago, it was 16, now it came down to 13. If it goes below 8, then it is a problem
outside off, left alone
almost carried to gully! Just short of the waiting palms. India sigh, South Africa vent. It was a length-delivery, and holding its line outside the offstump and Zaheer, is beaten by that straightening, pushes at it and it flies to left of gully but falls short
snorter! It came in from outside the offstump, right at the shoulder, Zaheer sways away and almost ends up falling to the ground. Sreesanth is quite chuffed up with the effort. "Classy .... classy"
outside off, left alone
short of length, Zaheer gets right behind the line - he has been doing that consistenly, making every effort , and pushes it out towards cover point. Wants a single, Sreesanth, wisely, send him back
on the hips, tucked behind square-leg
The light meter came out at the end of the last over. The umpires take a reading. the game continues meanwhile
|Toss||South Africa, elected to bat first|
|Player Of The Match|
|Series result||3-match series level 1-1|
|Match number||Test no. 1825|
|Hours of play (local time)||09.30 start, Lunch 11.30-12.10, Tea 14.40-15.00, Close 17.00|
|Match days||26,27,28,29,30 December 2006 - day (5-day match)|