Mullally's finest catch of the tour

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The Independent Online
Cricket

Alan Mullally had a day to remember in New Zealand yesterday, although it had nothing to do with batting or bowling.

Fishing off the coast at Napier, where England were preparing to play New Zealand in today's third one-day international, the Leicestershire fast bowler caught a 60lb Mako shark after a 45-minute struggle.

The shark was taken back to the England hotel in Napier, destined for the team barbecue, together with about 40 crayfish also taken during the trip.

On dry land in South Africa,Australia completed their build-up to the first Test with a fifth consecutive victory yesterday. The tourists cruised to a 79-run victory against a Transvaal Invitation XI in Soweto, scoring 261 for 7 in their 45 overs and dismissing the local side for 182.

The game was over as a contest by the 10th over of Transvaal's reply when Nic Pothas was caught off Andrew Bichel without scoring, reducing his side to 29 for 5.

There were only two stands of substance for the home side - first between the Transvaal all-rounder, Andrew Hall, and a Johannesburg schoolboy, Solly Ndima. They put on 53 for the sixth wicket, Ndima making 35 from 41 balls with six boundaries before having his middle stump removed by Greg Blewett.

The Transvaal captain, Clive Eksteen, made 42 from 64 balls and added 54 for the ninth wicket with Wayne Kidwell, who finished 30 not out.

Earlier, Justin Langer (63) and Matthew Elliott (69) had laid the foundation for Australia's challenging total by putting on 117 for the second wicket and the tempo was lifted when Michael Bevan (49) and Matthew Hayden (47) smashed 98 for the fourth wicket in 11 overs.

Australia have now won all five games before the first of three Tests against South Africa, which starts in Johannesburg on Friday.

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