Centurion: AB de Villiers scored the quickest Test century by a South African on Saturday when he reached his hundred from 75 deliveries on the third day of the first Test against India.
At lunch De Villiers, who scored a national record 278 not out against Pakistan last month, had reached 119 not out from 94 ball as South Africa extended their first innings to 591 for three in reply to India’s 136.
The previous record of 95 deliveries was shared by Denis Lindsay (versus Australia 1966/67), Jonty Rhodes (v West Indies, 1998/99) and Shaun Pollock (v Sri Lanka 2000/01).
Jacques Kallis was nearing his first Test double century as he continued unperturbed to 182 not out at the break.
South Africa resumed their first innings on 366 for two and Hashim Amla, Kallis and De Villiers launched a mind-numbing assault on the lacklustre Indian bowlers, lashing 225 runs in 36 overs in the morning session.
While Amla and Kallis played with classical elegance, De Villiers savaged the bowling, hammering 11 fours and five sixes. He was particularly severe on Suresh Raina with 50 runs coming from the part-time off-spinner’s four overs on Saturday morning.
India’s only success came when Amla, who had cruised to 140, edged a terrible delivery, way down the leg-side, from Ishant Sharma to wicketkeeper Mahendra Singh Dhoni.
It was Amla’s fourth successive century against India, equalling the world record shared by South African Alan Melville against England (1938/39-1947), West Indian Everton Weekes versus India (1948/49) and Pakistan’s Shoaib Mohammed against New Zealand (1984/85-1990/91).
Amla and Kallis’s partnership of 230 in 238 minutes was their fifth double-century stand in Tests, just one behind the world record set by Australians Matthew Hayden and Justin Langer.
Kallis and De Villiers have added 195 in 30.3 overs against an Indian team who look dead on their feet.