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Styris anchors struggling New Zealand

Despite an unbeaten 41 from Scott Styris, New Zealand stuttered to 128/5 in their second innings.

india Updated: Mar 28, 2004 13:26 IST

Despite an unbeaten 41 from Scott Styris, New Zealand stuttered to 128 for five in their second innings at the close of the third day in the third and final Test against South Africa on Sunday.

New Zealand, who had looked in danger of handing the game to South Africa at 111 for five, had a lead of 109 when bad light stopped play five overs early.

The home team began their second innings with a 19-run deficit after South Africa collapsed in their first innings to 316.

New Zealand seamer Chris Martin followed up his 11 wickets in the second Test with a five-wicket haul as the tourists, resuming at 237 for three, lost their last seven wickets for the addition of 79 runs. Overnight batsman Jacques Rudolph was left stranded on 93 not out.

Martin put his success down to some tentative South African batting.

"They were a wee bit on edge, I suppose, and that helps when you get an early wicket and the team gets behind you," Martin said. "We put the willies up them a bit and they didn't like it."

EVENLY POISED

But South Africa made up for their poor batting display by comfortably dispensing with New Zealand's top order.

"We let ourselves down in the morning today," South African captain Graeme Smith said. "I had different plans for the day but we failed with the bat and now things are fairly evenly poised.

"The bowlers have been superb. We've built some serious pressure and we've got wickets at crucial times, but there are still five big ones to go tomorrow."

Michael Papps was the first New Zealand wicket to fall, trapped lbw for a duck by Shaun Pollock in the opening over.

Skipper Stephen Fleming took 57 balls for his nine before he attempted to hook Andre Nel and was caught behind by Mark Boucher.

Mathew Sinclair (21) was lbw to Pollock without offering a stroke and Mark Richardson, who had made a painstaking 37 off 142 balls, attempted to lift Nicky Boje over mid-wicket but hit the ball straight to Smith.

Brendon McCullum was then bowled for three attempting to sweep Boje.

Earlier, Martin had struck with the new ball to have Martin van Jaarsveld caught by Jacob Oram in the gully for 59.

The batsman of the series, Jacques Kallis, then edged a ball from Martin to wicketkeeper McCullum for a duck.

In the same over, Boucher nicked Martin to Papps at third slip for another duck. Martin finished with five for 55.

Pollock was the next victim, caught by Fleming at first slip off Oram for five.

Boje (25) was bowled by Cairns and Ntini fell for four when he ducked a bouncer, the ball struck his bat and ballooned high for McCullum to catch.

Cairns made it three wickets in eight balls when last man Nel was snapped up in the gully by Oram for a duck.

New Zealand lead the series 1-0.

First Published: Mar 28, 2004 12:35 IST