Steyn, Philander hand SA advantage

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HAMILTON — Dale Steyn and Vernon Philander handed South Africa the advantage at stumps on the weather-affected first day of the second cricket Test against New Zealand at Seddon Park in Hamilton yesterday.

Steyn claimed 3-49 while Philander grabbed 4-70 as New Zealand, after being asked to bat, were bowled out for 185 in 61,2 overs.

The tourists then lost the wickets of Graeme Smith (13) and nightwatchman Dale Steyn (4) before Alviro Petersen (8 not out) and Hashim Amla (2 not out) steered the Proteas to 27 for two at the close of play.

Seamer Chris Martin was the pick of the host’s attack with figures of 2-18 as South Africa faced 11 overs in their reply before time was called.

South Africa had opted to field in overcast conditions and on a greenish pitch, but despite the early loss of Rob Nicol (2) and Martin Guptill (22), the decision looked to have been a poor one on a slow pitch as Brendon McCullum and Ross Taylor helped New Zealand to 133 for two.

Rain had resulted in a two-hour delay, but when play resumed after tea Steyn and Philander took centre stage as they engineered a collapse that saw New Zealand lose five wickets in the space of 20 balls without the addition of a run.

It was only the third time in Test history that five wickets had fallen for no run with New Zealand being the team responsible on all three occasions.

McCullum had batted with admirable restraint on a pitch which offered very little swing or seam movement, despite the overhead conditions, and he brought up his 22nd Test fifty off 117 balls.

But the right-handed batsman eventually grew frustrated by South Africa’s tactic of peppering him with short balls and he succumbed to temptation when he top-edged an attempted pull shot off the bowling of paceman Steyn to be caught at deep square leg.

McCullum’s dismissal for 61 off 133 balls left New Zealand on 133 for three and it heralded the start of the collapse. with Taylor, who scored 44 off 93 deliveries, the next man to depart when he played a loose shot to a Philander delivery to send an outside edge to Smith at first slip.

The Black Caps were in disarray and when Philander had Doug Bracewell (0) caught behind by keeper Boucher the hosts had crashed to 133 for seven. — Supersport