Devon Smith/FP

Devon Smith/FP

by Michael Bascombe

BENONI, South Africa, December 10, 2014 – West Indies took advantaged of a young and inexperienced South African XI at Willowmoore Park to give their players valuable practice ahead of the three Test matches against South Africa, starting next week.

Marlon Samuels and Devon Smith featured in an unbeaten third-wicket partnership of 182 runs for West Indies in reply to the Invitational XI’s 125 all out.

Samuels and Smith are not out on 103 and 83 respectively with West Indies closing on 217 for two, leading by 92 runs with eight wickets remaining in the first innings.

Samuels was in a punishing mood as he brought up his century with a boundary off medium pacer Rabian Engelbrecht in the final over of the day’s play. His century came off 102 balls and included 19 fours.

Smith, who replaced an injured Chris Gayle and opened the batting with Kraigg Brathwaite, is hoping to impress selectors for a place on the final team for the opening Test against South Africa at Centurion next Wednesday. The Grenadian lefy-hander hit 12 fours and one six.

The only West Indies’ casualties were Brathwaite (12) and Leon Johnson (0).

“It was a good day for us and we took advantage of the opportunity,” Smith told GrenadaSports. “Marlon and I dominated the bowling and we’ll be looking to push ahead on the second day.”

Earlier, Sheldon Cottrell bowled 37 balls and took five for 16 to restrict the home team for 125. Fellow Jamaican Jerome Taylor took two for 12 and one wicket each for Jason Holder and Sulieman Benn.

Aviwe Mgijima (35) and Clyde Fortuin (34) provided useful support for the South African XI.

Summarised Scores:

South African Invitation XI 125 all out, 36.1 overs (Aviwe Mgijima 35, Clyde Fortuin 34, Stiann van Zyl 23; Sheldon Cottrell 5-16, Jerome Taylor 2-12, Jason Holder 1-22, Sulieman Benn 1-29).

West Indies 217-2, 47 overs (Marlon Samuels 103*, Devon Smith 83*, Rory Kleinveldt 2-34)

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