Dravid reaches 12,000 test runs but India struggle

CENTURION, South Africa, (Reuters) – India’s Rahul  Dravid became only the third batsman to score 12,000 test runs  but his team were struggling for survival at lunch on the fourth  day of the first test against South Africa today.
Dravid stubbornly denied South Africa for 161 minutes and  109 balls in scoring 43 runs that took his career tally to  12,000 runs in 255 innings, as India reached 277 for six at  lunch, still trailing by 207 runs at Centurion.
Only compatriot Sachin Tendulkar, whose 38 not out took him  to 14,440 runs, and Australia’s Ricky Ponting (12,333) have  scored more runs than 37-year-old Dravid.

Rahul Dravid
Rahul Dravid

It took a top-class delivery from Morne Morkel to eventually  dismiss Dravid. A back-of-a-length ball drew the batsman forward  and a slight deviation off the seam found the outside edge of  the bat and offered wicketkeeper Mark Boucher a simple catch.
India resumed on 190 for two with Dravid on 28 and  nightwatchman Ishant Sharma on seven.
Ishant survived a chance on 15 when he gave Morkel a return  catch. But umpire Ian Gould suspected the fast bowler may have  bowled a no-ball and called for a television replay, which  confirmed Morkel had over-stepped.
Ishant added eight more runs to his score before Hashim Amla  nonchalantly snapped up a sharp catch at short-leg off Dale  Steyn.
South Africa ended the morning well on track for an innings  victory by snapping up two more wickets in the last five overs  of the session.
Vangipurappu Laxman (8), with his feet rooted on the crease,  drove at left-arm seamer Lonwabo Tsotsobe and edged the ball to  AB de Villiers at a wide third slip.
Suresh Raina (5) fell on the stroke of lunch, offering a  simple catch to Paul Harris at first slip as he played a short  ball from Jacques Kallis with a dreadful angled bat outside off  stump.
Tendulkar remains key to India’s hopes of surviving the day,  and is beginning to blossom with six fours from his 75 balls at  the crease, most of them driven beautifully through the covers.

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