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Amla gives South Africa control in final test

Hashim Amla and Alviro Petersen made batting look easy as they guided South Africa to 103 for one at tea on the weather-affected first day of the third and final Test match against New Zealand at the Basin Reserve today.

cricket Updated: Mar 23, 2012 09:34 IST

Hashim Amla and Alviro Petersen made batting look easy as they guided South Africa to 103 for one at tea on the weather-affected first day of the third and final Test match against New Zealand at the Basin Reserve on Friday.

Amla was on 63, his 23rd test half century, while Petersen was on 34 as the visitors, who had been sent in by New Zealand captain Ross Taylor, went to the break looking comfortably in control.

The hosts had failed to capitalise on any assistance they may have achieved from the pitch that had been under cover for almost a week due to wet weather in Wellington.

New Zealand's bowlers failed to put any pressure on the South African batsmen, bowling wide of off stump or too short allowing them to leave too many deliveries.

Such was Taylor's desperation to try and upset the South African's rhythm he was forced to introduce part-time medium pacer Dean Brownlie, who was belted for 20 runs from two overs.

South Africa captain Graeme Smith was the only wicket to fall when he was given out for five with the score on 13,
adjudged to have got an inside edge to a Doug Bracewell delivery and caught by wicketkeeper Kruger van Wyk.

Smith initially stood his ground, walked down the pitch to talk with Petersen then asked for the decision to be reviewed.

Television replays showed clear daylight between his bat and the ball as it passed by, though microphones indicated some sort of sound and third umpire Billy Doctrove upheld Dar's decision.

Smith was shaking his head as he walked off the field.

Overnight rain had delayed the start of the game, with Dar and fellow umpire Richard Kettleborough deeming the ground unsuitable for play until 1400 (0100 GMT). The match had been scheduled to start at 1030.

South Africa only need to draw the game to seal the three-match series after they won the second test at Seddon Park in Hamilton by nine wickets.