Rustenburg: India A pacer Ishwar Pandey took four wickets, including two in successive deliveries, but Jean-Paul Duminy came up with a fighting 84 that provided some respectability to the South Africa A reply in the first unofficial Test, here at the Olympia Park, on Monday.
At stumps on Day III, South Africa A were 312 for nine, riding Duminy and wicket-keeper Thami Tsolekile’s 86-run partnership for the seventh wicket.
Precisely, Duminy and Tsolekile’s fightback in the post-tea session prevented India A from wrapping up the home team’s first innings especially after they were reduced to 119 for five.
Before pairing up with Tsolekille, Duminy had put on another important partnership with skipper Justin Ontong (47), who was out caught behind off Pandey. The duo had added 75 for the sixth wicket at a time when the South Africa A innings looked to be going nowhere after losing three wickets in a space of just 25 runs.
For the visitors, Pandey (four for 40) did a fantastic job, being instrumental in breaking the partnerships that frustrated the Indian camp. He first broke the Duminy-Tsolekile stand by removing the stumper and then followed it up with a caught and bowled dismissal of Wayne Parnell off the very next delivery.
Suresh Raina, too, chipped in with two wickets with his part-time spin, which included the prised scalp of Duminy, who was dismissed in the last over of the day. The hosts are still 270 runs behind India A’s total of 582 for nine declared and will have to bat through the day, on Tuesday, if they are to save the match.
Earlier, resuming at 20 for one, South Africa were staring down the barrel as they were reduced to 206 for six at tea before Duminy and Tsolekile fought back in the day’s final session.
India A bowlers polished off the South Africa A middle order with their disciplined show. The hosts found the going tough right from the beginning as Shami Ahmed struck as early as in the third over of the day, dismissing the other opener Dean Elgar.
The pacer had Elgar trapped leg before as the hosts lost their second wicket with just 22 runs on the board.