Amla spurs dominant South Africa on Day 2 of West Indies Test
South African captain Hashim Amla hit his third Test double century and Stiaan van Zyl made a hundred on debut before rain brought a premature end to the second day of the first Test in Centurion on Thursday.
Amla made 208 and the left-handed Van Zyl hit an unbeaten 101 as South Africa piled up 552 for five declared.
But rain swept across SuperSport Park soon after the declaration, preventing a start to the West Indies first innings and denying Amla the chance to make inroads into the tourists’ batting.
“I wanted to get in 35 or 36 overs [to bowl] before the close,” Amla said. “When the declaration came, there were a possible 38 overs left in the day, but the weather had the final say.
“We’ve done our bit to try and get as much time as possible to bowl. For us, it’s been a lovely two days. When we come out tomorrow we will have three days to try to get 20 wickets.”
Amla’s first home double century was a Test record for Centurion, beating the 201 not out by Jacques Kallis against India in 2010/11.
Left-arm spinner Suleiman Benn took the only two wickets to fall on the day, dismissing AB de Villiers for 152 and having Amla caught on the long-on boundary.
In between, Amla and Van Zyl put on 155 off 37 overs for the fifth wicket, while Benn was forced to battle through 46 overs and concede 148 runs.
Van Zyl was a picture of nerves in his first few deliveries and might have been out first ball as he steered a delivery just short of the leg slip. He was also dropped on two in the same position.
“Before I faced my first ball my gloves were already wet,” Van Zyl said. “I can’t describe it, but getting off that zero was such a crazy feeling.”
The West Indies were without fast bowler Kemar Roach, who left the field on Monday afternoon after injuring his right ankle. A team spokesman said scans had revealed no significant damage and it was hoped he would be able to bowl later in the match.
Roach’s injury left the tourists with only three front-line bowlers, with Jerome Taylor and Sheldon Cottrell providing pace and Benn needing to tie up one end with spin.
The West Indies were unable to prevent the total from mounting steadily, despite captain Denesh Ramdin setting defensive fields.
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Published: December 18, 2014 04:00 AM