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Amla double ton puts Proteas in charge

Hashim Amla compiled his highest score in 42 Tests as South Africa piled on the runs in Nagpur.
Hashim Amla compiled his highest score in 42 Tests as South Africa piled on the runs in Nagpur.
  • Hashim Amla compiles his first double century as South Africa declare on 558-6 in Nagpur
  • Hosts India reach 25-0 at stumps on the second day of the opening Test of the series
  • Amla extends third-wicket partnership to 340 with Jacques Kallis, who falls for 173
  • He then adds 108 with A.B. De Villiers and 78 with Mark Boucher, being unbeaten on 253
  • Jacques Kallis
  • Hashim Amla
  • South Africa
  • India
  • Cricket

(CNN) -- Hashim Amla compiled his first double century after Jacques Kallis again fell short of the landmark as South Africa continued to punish India's bowlers on day two of the first cricket Test in Nagpur.

Amla was unbeaten on 253 when the tourists declared on 558-6 in the final session on Sunday, then India safely reached stumps at 25-0 in a clash between the top two teams in the five-day format.

It is the highest score made by a South African No. 3 batsman, and the highest by any from his country against India.

Amla extended his third-wicket partnership with Kallis to a South African record of 340 before his senior partner fell for 173, having added just 14 to his overnight tally in a subdued second part of his innings.

It was the first time any pair have put on a triple century in any matches between the two nations.

Kallis edged a delivery from off-spinner Harbhajan Singh onto his pads, and Murali Vijay took the catch at short leg to end a 351-ball knock that put the all-rounder into third equal on the all-time Test century-scoring list with 34.

Amla then added another 108 with A.B. De Villiers, who made a brisk 53 off 88 deliveries, and rode his luck as he was dropped twice on 149, as they broke South Africa's record for the fourth wicket in matches between the two teams.

De Villiers fell to part-time bowler Virender Sehwag and then Harbhajan removed J.P. Duminy for just nine to have the Proteas 476-5, but then Mark Boucher contributed 39 to a stand of 78 with Amla before becoming Zaheer Khan's third victim, and captain Graeme Smith called the innings to a close with 40 minutes left in the day.

India openers Gautam Gambhir and Virender Sehwag survived four overs from pace bowlers Dale Steyn and Morne Morkel with some positive batting, and will start Monday's play on 12 and nine respectively as they seek to make inroads into a massive first-innings deficit.

They will do well to take the lead of Amla, who was steady throughout his 473-ball innings, hitting 22 boundaries and scoring 55, 45 and 38 in Saturday's three sessions.

While India relied heavily on Harbhajan and Amit Mishra, who on a helpful pitch bowled only six maidens between them in 99 overs for combined figures 2-306, Smith has only one specialist spinner in Paul Harris plus all-rounder Duminy, with the medium pace of Kallis backing up Steyn, Morkel and rookie fast bowler Wayne Parnell.

Meanwhile, Australia crushed the West Indies by 113 runs in the opening match of their one-day series in Melbourne on Sunday.

Batting first, the hosts reached 256-8 in their 50 overs as opener Shane Watson top-scored with 56 in his 100th match, while captain Ricky Ponting made 49.

All-rounder Kieron Pollard took 3-45 for the Windies, while seamer Ravi Rampaul claimed 2-43.

The tourists then slumped to 143 all out in just 34.2 overs as opening bowler Ryan Harris and spinner Nathan Hauritz claimed three wickets each.

Doug Bollinger also snared two early victims, including the key scalp of big-hitting captain Chris Gayle, as the West Indies were left reeling on 12-3.

Pollard, signed for $750,000 in the Indian Premier League auctions last month, top-scored with 31 from 35 deliveries.