Botha, Steyn slay Windies

Johan Botha picked up 4-56 and Dale Steyn 3-37 to rip through a patchy West Indian batting lineup, which once again fell cheaply – this time for 231.

On a pitch which traditionally favors pace, the West Indies were crippled by the Proteas’ bolstered spin attack. Botha was introduced in the 11th over and together with Paul Harris, threatened more frequently than the later managed in St Kitts. However, the seamers too had their spoils, Steyn and Morkel once again removing the opening pair (Chris Gayle for 20 and Dale Richards 0 respectively) early to leave the hosts at 21-2.

However, the West Indies showed some spirit – all too absent in this series – and, through Shivnarine Chanderpaul and Narsingh Deonarine, consolidated taking the home side to 76-2.

Botha saw an end to this – his three scalps after the break summing up the variations in his armoury. In the first over, he lured Chanderpaul (22) forward, flighting the ball, and produced an outside edge as the ball dipped and turned away. Kallis’ brilliant catch was the cherry on top of a sublime dismissal. Brendan Nash followes in Botha’s next over; deceived by the turn, and trapped in front. Though ruled not out by Simon Taufel, a referral reversed proceedings.

Deonarine, despite a late flurry subsequent to Chanderpaul’s dismissal (with whom he had build a 55-run partnership) failed to spot a quicker delivery from Botha and was castled, to leave the West Indian cause in tatters at 105-5.

Enter Dwayne Bravo (61) and Denish Ramdin (27), who restored stability against the spinners in their 76-run stand, though frequently offering the seamers a sniff, particularly in response to shorter lengths.

It was Ramdin who departed first, top-edging an attempted hook off Kallis straight to Steyn at fine leg. Shane Shillingford (0) went in a similar fashion just 10 balls later. The temptation to dispatch a length ball, following a barrage of short ones, proved too strong for Bravo, ending his glittering half-century by edging Steyn to slip to end West Indian resistance.

Chasing 231, Graeme Smith started without hesitation – comfortable pulling the seamers through midwicket and whipping them through square, and coming down the track to the slower bowlers. However trouble at the other end dampened the lively start; Alviro Peterson caught after mistiming a pull, and Hashim Amla slapping Sulieman Benn straight to point. The guests closed out the day at 46-2, Smith and night watchman Harris resolute at the crease.

West Indies (first innings) 231 all out
Dwayne Bravo 61, Narsingh Deonarine 46, Johan Botha 4-56
South Africa (first innnings) 46-2
Graeme Smith 35*, Sulieman Benn 1-2

For a full scorecard click here.