Kallis marks last Test with fifty

Blackpool Citizen: Ravindra Jadeja, centre, celebrates the dismissal of South Africa captain Graeme Smith in Durban (AP) Ravindra Jadeja, centre, celebrates the dismissal of South Africa captain Graeme Smith in Durban (AP)

Jacques Kallis scored his 150th international half-century in his final Test as South Africa moved into a solid position on day three of the second Test against India.

Kallis announced that he would bring down the curtain on his Test career on Christmas Day and was given a guard of honour as he walked to the crease in the morning session.

After that he made reasonably untroubled progress to 61 not out as South Africa reached 267 for four at tea in reply to 334 in Durban.

The all-rounder put on 127 for the fourth wicket with AB de Villiers as the hosts recovered from three quick wickets to leave the match finely poised.

The Proteas had begun the day on 82 without loss and India would have thought they were up against it when skipper Graeme Smith scored a four off the first ball from Ishant Sharma.

Alviro Petersen then survived a very tight stumping call in the fourth over of the day but South Africa looked comfortable until Smith fell to a stunning catch from Shikhar Dhawan.

The skipper attempted to launch Ravindra Jadeja over midwicket but Dhawan took a brilliant catch over his shoulder to end Smith's innings at 47.

Just five overs later, Hashim Amla suffered a rare failure as Mohammed Shami got one to straighten and removed his off stump to dismiss the prolific number three.

That was the last ball of the 33rd over and Petersen was gone with the first ball of the next as Jadeja claimed his second victim.

Murali Vijay claimed the catch off an outside edge to remove the opener for 62, reached off 100 balls with eight fours.

South Africa were wobbling at that point but the experienced pair of De Villiers and Kallis saw them through to lunch with the minimum of fuss and did not take their foot off the pedal upon resumption.

All eyes were on Kallis but it was De Villiers who was making the running and he brought up his fifty off 78 balls with five fours.

The one-day skipper was nearly gone for 65, though, after a mix-up saw him have to dive to make his ground when a direct hit would have seen him back in the hutch.

He eventually fell for 74 as Jadeja got a beauty to turn and brush his outside edge giving a simple catch to Virat Kohli at slip.

That brought JP Duminy to the crease but it was Kallis' big moment that was to follow shortly after as he brought up his fifty off 131 balls with his ninth four off Jadeja.

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