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Last Updated: Sunday, 14 November, 2004, 11:41 GMT
Smith makes strong start to tour
Tour match, Jaipur, day one of three (stumps): South Africa 226-5 dec v Indian Board President's XI 4-0

Graeme Smith
Smith showed he is ready for the forthcoming Test series
South Africa captain Graeme Smith made a bold declaration in a bid to force a result in the tour opener against an Indian Board President's XI.

Smith hit 86, sharing a partnership of 92 with Justin Ontong, before calling his men in with the score 226-5.

Ontong, who has a chance to add to the a single Test cap he controversially gained three years ago, made 70.

Leg-spinner Sairaj Bahutule took four wickets for the hosts, who faced three overs at the end of day one.

Earlier Jaques Rudolph missed a chance to cement his place as a replacement opener in Herchelle Gibbs' absence when he was run out for 26.

I decided to go out with bags full of patience
Justin Ontong
Bahutule, who played two Tests in 2001, had Smith stumped shortly after tea and dismissed Boeta Dippenaar and Jacques Kallis cheaply.

South Africa's two-Test series against India begins in Kanpur next Saturday.

Ontong played a patient knock, hitting just three fours from 103 balls faced before he was caught by Gautam Gambhir at mid-wicket.

"It was an important partnership that not only helped our team but also gave me a good chance to adjust to the slow pace of the pitches here," he said.

"I decided to go out with bags full of patience - that is something we will need in this series."

South Africa surprisingly left out left-arm spinner Robin Peterson, the only specialist slow bowler in their squad.




SEE ALSO
Boucher axed for SA tour of India
27 Oct 04 |  South Africa


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