Cricket: Hudson flows to a century: Birthday batsman helps steady South Africa

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South Africa . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . .237-5

Australia

A CENTURY from the opener Andrew Hudson on his 29th birthday and an unbeaten 62 from Peter Kirsten gave South Africa a sound start to the second Test against Australia in Cape Town yesterday.

South Africa, electing to bat, reached 237 for 5, due largely to a fourth-wicket partnership of 89 between Hudson and Kirsten. The home side were wobbling at 100 for 3 after Gary Kirsten was run out for 29, Hansie Cronje was bowled for two and the captain, Kepler Wessels, had gone for 11.

Hudson remained a steadying influence as he reached his second Test century in just under four hours, which included 13 fours. The Natal opener, who was a victim of sledging during the first Test, was run out for 102 shortly after tea. 'They were concentrating on what they had to do today instead of concentrating on the man,' Hudson said. 'It seemed as though we were actually friends on the field, for a change.'

Hudson and Gary Kirsten took advantage of Merv Hughes and Craig McDermott, whose first three overs cost 19 runs. Hughes came close to picking up Hudson on 13 but he was caught by David Boon at short- leg off a no-ball.

It took only 9.2 overs for the scoreboard to show 50, but after reaching 71 without loss, South Africa lost three wickets for the addition of 29 runs. Hudson and Peter Kirsten took the score to 188 for 3 at tea, but the innings faltered again after the interval.

Hudson fell to a magnificent piece of fielding from Steve Waugh, who hit the bowler's end stumps with a direct throw while flat on the ground in the covers. Jonty Rhodes was then lbw to Glenn McGrath for five. Peter Kirsten went through to his third 50 in successive Tests and found a good ally in Brian McMillan, who ended the day 16 not out.

(First day: South Africa won toss)

SOUTH AFRICA - First Innings

A C Hudson run out . . . . . . . . . . . . . 102

G Kirsten run out Slater . . . . . . . . . . . 29

W J Cronje b McGrath . . . . . . . . . . . . . .2

*K C Wessels c M Waugh b McDermott . . . . . . 11

P N Kirsten not out . . . . . . . . . . . . . .62

J N Rhodes lbw b McGrath . . . . . . . . . . . .5

B McMillan not out . . . . . . . . . . . . . . 16

Extras (lb5 nb5) . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . 10

Total (for 5) . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . 237

Fall: 1-71 2-78 3-100 4-189 5-198.

To bat: D J Richardson, C R Matthews, P S de Villiers, A A Donald.

Bowling: McDermott 13-2-42-1 (3nb); Hughes 13-1-61-0 (1nb); McGrath 21-2-53-2; S Waugh 9-3-20-0; Warne 26-8-42-0 (1nb); M Waugh 6-2-12-0; Border 3-2-2-0.

AUSTRALIA: *A R Border, M A Taylor, M J Slater, D C Boon, M E Waugh, S R Waugh, I A Healy, M G Hughes, S K Warne, C J McDermott, G D McGrath.

Umpires: K Liebenberg (SA) and D Shepherd (Eng).

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