Zim keep Proteas in check

HARARE - Zimbabwe continued to make South Africa work for it as the tourists closed the second day of the only Test trailing by 55 runs on 201-4 with six wickets remaining.

South Africa’s innings revolved around Faf du Plessis’ patient half century of 69 from 192 balls.

Together Quinton de Kock (27 not out), Test cricket’s number one side will be looking forward to a healthy lead when the match resumes on day three this morning.

The hosts resumed the second day on 248-9 but the Zimbabwe tail-enders’ resistance lasted only 3.4 overs, yielding eight runs and taking their first innings total to 256 all out.

Debutant spinner John Nyumbu added two runs to his overnight score of nought before he was caught behind by wicketkeeper De Kock off Proteas pace spearhead Dale Steyn.

The wicket saw Steyn claiming five wickets in the first innings for 46 runs from 22.4 overs, his 24th five-for in Test cricket.

Fellow debutant Donald Tiripano was unbeaten on 15 having resumed day two on nine.

Dane Piedt, South Africa’s debutant spinner, finished on four wickets for 90 runs from 24 overs while seamer Vernon Philander claimed a single scalp.

The visitors got off to a nervy but patient start to their chase, managing to occupy the crease for longer periods but runs proved hard to come by.

Opener Alviro Petersen was the first to depart for 32 runs in the 23rd over after he was caught behind by wicketkeeper Richmond Mutumbami as debutant off-spinner Nyumbu announced his arrival to the Test scene with his first wicket.

South Africa were on 57-1 before breaking for lunch on 62-1 after 24 overs with Dean Elgar and Du Plessis unbeaten on 25 and five runs respectively.

Elgar fell 9.2 overs before tea courtesy of a Mutumbami one hand catch behind the stumps off debutant seamer Tiripano in the 48th over, leaving South Africa on 132-2.

South Africa captain Hashim Amla and du Plessis added 14 runs together taking their team to tea on 146-2 after 56 overs, Amla on four and Du Plessis 48.

Tendai Chatara tempted Amla (4) with an outside off-stump delivery that Amla guided to Vusi Sibanda in the covers before adding any runs shortly after tea.

Nyumbu got his second scalp in the 69th over when he had South Africa vice-captain AB de Villiers (7) caught at mid-wicket by Sibanda, leaving the visitors on 157-4 and trailing by 99 runs.

There was a late opportunity for Zimbabwe to make it five wickets in the penultimate over before stumps but captain Brendan Taylor could not hold on to a De Kock thick edge off the bowling of Nyumbu.

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