Zaheer Khan mops up Sri Lankan tail as hosts win third Test by an innings and 24 runs.
|South Africa’s highest ever Test scorer acknowledges the crowd [AFP]
Jacques Kallis hit his 32nd Test century to lead South Africa to 262 for four on the opening day of the first Test against England in Centurion.
His 112 not out gave the hosts the advantage after they had been sent in to bat and lost two wickets in each of the first two sessions.
South Africa’s leading run-scorer batted for 278 minutes and faced 203 balls, stroking 14 fours and an imperious six off spinner Graeme Swann, improving his overall total to 10,389 Test runs as South Africa’s highest ever scorer.
Kallis and JP Duminy (38 not out) shared an unbeaten fifth-wicket stand of 103.
England chose to go into the match with only four front-line bowlers, selecting Ian Bell to bat at No 6 in his 50th Test.
And that could come back to hurt the team as Graham Onions had to leave the field for some time due to a calf strain.
The seamer, one of only three in England’s attack, bowled just two overs in the final session.
Swann finished with 2-61, and is likely to bowl plenty of overs on Thursday,
especially if Onions is not fully fit.
Duminy was peppered with short-pitched bowling as part of England’s tactics. He successfully left alone plenty of bouncers, and struck some sweetly-timed boundaries through the covers, ending the day unbeaten on 38 after hitting four fours and a six.
South Africa fast bowler Friedel de Wet received his first cap after being selected in place of pace spearhead Dale Steyn, who was ruled out with a hamstring strain, while quick Makhaya Ntini became the fifth South African to play 100 Tests with his selection.
After England captain Andrew Strauss won the toss and elected to field, his South African counterpart Graeme Smith was out on the ninth ball of the day. He touched a ball from Stuart Broad down the legside for wicketkeeper Matt Prior to take a tumbling catch.
Hashim Amla was out 19 overs later for 19, pushing at a ball from Graham Onions to be caught at second slip by Paul Collingwood to leave the hosts on 51-2. One ball earlier, Amla had flashed a four over slips to take his partnership with Ashwell Prince to 50.
|First day scorecard|
South Africa first innings
Prince had an eventful first session. On 19, he was given out lbw off Onions by umpire Steve Davis.
The batsman referred the decision to the TV
umpire, and was vindicated by replays that showed the ball going over the stumps. Prince was ruled not out.
Then, two balls after Amla was out, Prince was dropped on 21. He flicked a delivery from James Anderson down the legside and Alastair Cook only just failed to hold what would have been a stunning catch.
South Africa went to lunch at 70-2 and nine overs later, Swann took a wicket with just his second ball, finding the outside edge of Prince’s bat to have him caught at first slip by Collingwood to end a 155-minute innings of 45. Prince hit six fours.
Toward the end of the session, England unsuccessfully appealed to the TV umpire for a review having been convinced that De Villiers was caught behind off Swann. That was the second failed referral by England and they have no more appeals left in this innings.
However, Swann got rid of De Villiers in the last over before tea, having him caught by Alastair Cook at short-leg to be out for 32.
Opener Prince said South Africa were hoping Kallis and Duminy could add substantially to their partnership on the second day.
“Everyone knows how calm Jacques is and it rubs off on everyone else. We’ll have to negotiate the first hour again tomorrow because the ball is quite new, but hopefully they can build the partnership as big as possible,” he said.
“I think being only four down has tilted things our way.”