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Steyn power brings SA back into match

Ajinkya Rahane on way to 51 not out, in Durban, on Friday

Durban: Dale Steyn produced a fiery spell to rock the Indian batting line-up with a six-wicket haul as visitors squandered the overnight advantage to be bowled out for 334 on a rain-hit second day of the suth Africa here on Friday.

Steyn finished with splendid figures of six for 100 as the Indians lost nine wickets for only 153 runs after play began in the post lunch session after a three-hour delay due to rain.

The 29-year-old Steyn brought South Africa back in the game after scalping three wickets in a space of 10 deliveries. Then, in the second spell, wreaked havoc with another three wickets in 14 deliveries as Indians lost the last five wickets for 14 runs.

AB de Villiers had a fantastic day behind the stumps, taking five catches during the course of the day and helping his bowlers decimate the Indians.

At stumps, South Africa raced to 82 for no loss with skipper Graeme Smith batting on 35 in company of Alviro Peterson who has smashed his way to 46 off 61 balls with seven boundaries.

Steyn had last taken a wicket in the first innings of the first Test at Johannesburg, when he had dismissed Shikhar Dhawan. Since then he bowled 69.2 overs giving away 217 runs before removing Cheteshwar Pujara to end his barren spell.

He removed Pujara (70), Murali Vijay (97) and Rohit Sharma (0) within a space of 10 deliveries to reduce India to 199 for four, when the proceedings started in the post-lunch session.

In the post tea-session, Steyn again struck after Ajinkya Rahane (51 no) and skipper Mahendra Singh Dhoni stitched together a 55-run partnership to take India to 320 for five.

This time, Dhoni (24), Zaheer Khan (0) and Ishant Sharma (4) were dismissed by the South African pacer within a space of 14 deliveries.

In between Steyn’s scalps, left-arm spinner Robin Peterson dismissed Ravindra Jadeja (0) caught by Jacques Kallis at first slip. Kallis, playing in his last Test, reached the milestone of 200 catches.

When Steyn dismissed Zaheer Khan after AB de Villiers plucked off a stunner from thin air, he had completed his 22nd five-wicket haul in Test cricket.

From 181/1, India were reduced to 199 for four. Steyn pitched one outside the off-stump to get rid of Pujara, caught by De Villiers, after hitting nine fours in 132 balls.

Vijay, who was peppered with the short stuff, missed a century by only three runs when Steyn angled a rising delivery onto the ribs which was gloved for De Villiers to complete a brilliant leg-side catch.

Virat Kohli (46, 87 balls, 5x4) tried to control the damage with a 66-run stand for the fifth wicket with Rahane, who also looked in good touch.