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Dull end to tour match
10 Apr 2006
By: Richard Edmunds

On a day on which just 40 overs were possible, the Rest of South Africa reached 270-8 in their second innings before bad light brought a premature end to the day and the match against the touring New Zealanders at Benoni.

The New Zealand attack, one missing Shane Bond due to a knee injury which we are assured won't keep him out of the first test, shared the wickets evenly with every bowler used taking at least one. The most successful was Daniel Vettori who finished with 3-77 from a reasonable workload of 29 overs.

Justin Ontong followed his first innings 61 with an unbeaten 144 in the second innings, perhaps just gently reminding the national selectors of his existence, while first innings centurions Neil McKenzie and JP Duminy fell for 2 and 0 respectively.

The main positives for New Zealand to take from this match are the bowling of Vettori and James Franklin, who took 4-80 in the first innings and 2-58 in the second, and the batting from Stephen Fleming and Brendon McCullum, who both recorded centuries. Fleming's came at almost a run a ball and McCullum's at better, and they hit 12 sixes between them.

It was a solid workout for New Zealand against a side that certainly provided a good standard of opposition and at times threatened to quite badly embarrass the tourists. Although a number of members of the side have showed signs of good form, New Zealand's chances in the tests rely heavily on the condition of THAT knee.

Rest of South Africa 395
Neil McKenzie 141, JP Duminy 127
James Franklin 4-80, Chris Martin 2-74

New Zealand 372
Stephen Fleming 118, Brendon McCullum 101
Monde Zondeki 4-107, Rory Kleinvelt 2-96

Rest of South Africa 270-8
Justin Ontong 144 no, Stephen Cook 38
Daniel Vettori 3-77, James Franklin 2-58

Match Drawn.

Cricket Web Player of the Match

Justin Ontong - 61 & 144 not out

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