Durban, Jan 12 (PTI) AB de Villers and JP Duminy noticedup contrasting half centuries to propel South Africa to achallenging 289 for nine in the first cricket one-dayinternational against India here today.
Batting first after winning the toss, South Africa werelooking good for a few more, but four wickets for just 56 runsin the last 10 overs somewhat foiled their plans.
Duminy (73 off 89) and de Villiers (76 off 69) scored atwill, picking the gaps and finding the boundaries withconsummate ease, after Hashim Amla (50 off 36) gave the hostsa flying start with an aggressive half-century at the SaharaStadium in Kingsmead here.
Zaheer Khan, Munaf Patel and Rohit Sharma finished withtwo wickets each, while Harbhajan Singh, Ashish Nehra andSuresh Raina accounted for a victim each.
While boundaries kept coming at regular intervals as longas de Viiliers and Duminy were at the crease, the two also ranhard between the wickets to steal the singles and twos.
After Munaf brought to an end the out-of-sorts ColinIngram''s 34-minute stay in the middle, de Villiers signalledhis arrival with two fours on either off Nehra.
Along with Duminy, who came in at the fall of Amla''swicket, de Villiers rebuilt the hosts'' innings by playing somesensible cricket.
De Villiers'' knock, which included seven fours and onesix, was in stark contrast to the one played by Duminy. Whilethe former found the boundaries at will, including a straightsix off Harbhajan Singh midway into the innings, Duminy reliedon ones and the twos. He, however, sent a Yuvraj Singhdelivery over long-on for the maximum.
Apart from that six, Duminy had just one four to showfor.
Thanks to the de Villiers-Duminy combo, South Africa werecruising at 213 for three before the 131-run partnership cameto an end, courtesy Rohit Sharma who was lucky that his longhop found Harbhajan''s safe hands at deep mid-wicket.
David Miller came and left but the hosts were dealt a bigblow when Duminy, trying to reverse sweep Sharma, foundhimself trapped.
That pegged South Africa back who scored less than 100 inthe last 15 overs, and just 45 after Duminy''s departure in the42nd over. .