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It bagan with hope, as Rahul Dravid (32) and Sachin Tendulkar (44), had a 60 run partnership during the first day of the 1st cricket test match against South Africa at the Wanderers stadium in Johannesburg, South Africa, Friday, Dec. 15, 2006. And then Dada was back. The picture shows him hit by a bouncer from South Africa's bowler Andre Nel, unseen in the 

picture. Saurav remained not out at 51, helping India reach a somewhat respectable total of 249. 
Dada was not alone with the heroics in the Indian first innings. He shared an exhilarating last-wicket stand with VRV 

Singh who was comical but effective in smashing 29 off 26 balls and put on 44 runs from 35 balls with the irrepressible 

Sourav Ganguly (51). The man who set the cat among the pigeons. Sorry, it was the butterfly float, but he sure stung as a bee. 
Shanthakumaran Sreesanth returned with 5-40, as the South Africans were bundled out for 84, their lowest ever since 

readmission into Test cricket. While the Indian youngster is making his mark, here was the experienced master on the sidelights. South Africa's 

Shaun Pollock became the tenth bowler in Test history and the first South African to rack up 400 wickets after he 

dismissed Rahul Dravid with a superb away-cutter on the second day at the Wanderers. Very Very Special Laxman was back as the vice-captain, and if he disappointed in the first innings after scoring a fine, 

fluent 22, it was thanks to his sublime 73 that India succeeded in increasing the lead to over 400. In the end, despite a 

much improved effort, the target proved too much for South Africans. And this possibly will have to be image of the year for Indian cricket fans. Shanthakumaran Sreesanth who had wrecked 

the South African first innings with his bowling, was perhaps the one who broke their back while batting. He first tried to 

back away and whack a Nell bouncer, failed and got a mouthful from Nel who pointed toward his chest and seemed to 

say that he lacked heart. The next ball was sent sailing over Nel's head and over the fence for a towering six, and then 

followed what has probably never seen before on a Cricket pitch. A martial Keralite dance, with much waving and flailing 

of the bat  and uninhibited and triumphant pelvic thrusts. And then came the taunts.  Shanthakumaran Sreesanth laughs mockingly at Hashim Amla, left, after dismissing him for 

17 runs during their second innings on the third day. Dada, VVS and Zaheer Khan were not the only comeback kids, nor was Sreesanth. There was the old warhorse, the 

unsung hero Anil Kumble who finally helped wipe out the tail, and finished with 3 wickets in the second and 2 in the first 

innings. While this would deservedly be remembered as Sreesanth's match, it would be unfair to not remember the contribution 

of Zaheer Khan whose figures of 5 wickets in the match do not reflect the way he troubled the South Africans. And it 

was not just outstanding bowling. He also shared a perfectly paced 37 in the second innings, putting on 70 runs with 

Laxman for the eighth wicket, and it was thanks to this that Indian lead was extended beyond 400. India's players celebrate after winning by 123 runs on the third day of the 1st cricket test match against South Africa at 

the Wanderers stadium in Johannesburg, South Africa, Monday, Dec. 18, 2006. Dravid summed up the match well: 'It was a great team effort.'
Dec 18, 2006
It bagan with hope, as Rahul Dravid (32) and Sachin Tendulkar (44), had a 60 run partnership during the first day of the 1st cricket test match against South Africa at the Wanderers stadium in Johannesburg, South Africa, Friday, Dec. 15, 2006.

- AP Photo/Themba Hadebe
Dec 18, 2006
And then Dada was back. The picture shows him hit by a bouncer from South Africa's bowler Andre Nel, unseen in the picture. Saurav remained not out at 51, helping India reach a somewhat respectable total of 249.

- AP Photo/Themba
Dec 18, 2006
Dada was not alone with the heroics in the Indian first innings. He shared an exhilarating last-wicket stand with VRV Singh who was comical but effective in smashing 29 off 26 balls and put on 44 runs from 35 balls with the irrepressible Sourav Ganguly (51).

- AP Photo/Themba
Dec 18, 2006
The man who set the cat among the pigeons. Sorry, it was the butterfly float, but he sure stung as a bee. Shanthakumaran Sreesanth returned with 5-40, as the South Africans were bundled out for 84, their lowest ever since readmission into Test cricket.

- AP Photo/Themba
Dec 18, 2006
While the Indian youngster is making his mark, here was the experienced master on the sidelights. South Africa's Shaun Pollock became the tenth bowler in Test history and the first South African to rack up 400 wickets after he dismissed Rahul Dravid with a superb away-cutter on the second day at the Wanderers.

- AP Photo/Themba
Dec 18, 2006
Very Very Special Laxman was back as the vice-captain, and if he disappointed in the first innings after scoring a fine, fluent 22, it was thanks to his sublime 73 that India succeeded in increasing the lead to over 400. In the end, despite a much improved effort, the target proved too much for South Africans.

- AP Photo/Themba
Dec 18, 2006
And this possibly will have to be image of the year for Indian cricket fans. Shanthakumaran Sreesanth who had wrecked the South African first innings with his bowling, was perhaps the one who broke their back while batting. He first tried to back away and whack a Nell bouncer, failed and got a mouthful from Nel who pointed toward his chest and seemed to say that he lacked heart. The next ball was sent sailing over Nel's head and over the fence for a towering six, and then followed what has probably never seen before on a Cricket pitch. A martial Keralite dance, with much waving and flailing of the bat and uninhibited and triumphant pelvic thrusts.

- TV grab
Dec 18, 2006
And then came the taunts. Shanthakumaran Sreesanth laughs mockingly at Hashim Amla, left, after dismissing him for 17 runs during their second innings on the third day.

- AP Photo/Themba Hadebe
Dec 18, 2006
Dada, VVS and Zaheer Khan were not the only comeback kids, nor was Sreesanth. There was the old warhorse, the unsung hero Anil Kumble who finally helped wipe out the tail, and finished with 3 wickets in the second and 2 in the first innings.

- AP Photo/Themba Hadebe
Dec 18, 2006
While this would deservedly be remembered as Sreesanth's match, it would be unfair to not remember the contribution of Zaheer Khan whose figures of 5 wickets in the match do not reflect the way he troubled the South Africans. And it was not just outstanding bowling. He also shared a perfectly paced 37 in the second innings, putting on 70 runs with Laxman for the eighth wicket, and it was thanks to this that Indian lead was extended beyond 400.

- AP Photo/Themba Hadebe
Dec 18, 2006
India's players celebrate after winning by 123 runs on the third day of the 1st cricket test match against South Africa at the Wanderers stadium in Johannesburg, South Africa, Monday, Dec. 18, 2006. Dravid summed up the match well: 'It was a great team effort.'

- AP Photo/Themba Hadebe
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The Jo'burg Jig
Dec 18, 2006
It bagan with hope, as Rahul Dravid (32) and Sachin Tendulkar (44), had a 60 run partnership during the first day of the 1st cricket test match against South Africa at the Wanderers stadium in Johannesburg, South Africa, Friday, Dec. 15, 2006.

- AP Photo/Themba Hadebe
 
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