WELLINGTON, March 17 (Reuters) - New Zealand’s Henry Nicholls was again in the thick of the action on the second day of the second test against South Africa on Friday, the first innings centurion snaring two catches as the tourists were reduced to 104 for six at lunch.
Temba Bavuma was on 15 at the break with Quinton de Kock two not out after the Proteas, who resumed on 24 for two, lost four wickets while chasing New Zealand’s first innings tally of 268.
Nicholls, who scored his maiden test century on Thursday, took catches at midwicket to dismiss JP Duminy for 16 and then the dangerous Hashim Amla for 21.
While Duminy spooned the ball to Nicholls off left-arm quick Neil Wagner, the removal of Amla was much more difficult.
The right hander flicked a Colin de Grandhomme delivery off his pads in the direction of the fielder, who parried the ball above his head then reached out to grasp it with his left hand as he tumbled to the ground.
South Africa captain Faf du Plessis had flirted with disaster throughout his innings of 22 with several lofted shots before he gave seamer de Grandhomme his third wicket, caught behind about 10 minutes before the break.
Nightwatchman Kagiso Rabada was the first batsman to fall in the second over of the day, adding just one run to take his tally to nine before he was bowled by paceman Tim Southee.
New Zealand’s first innings had been held together by Nicholls on day one after the hosts slumped to 21 for three inside the first hour of play. (Reporting by Greg Stutchbury; Editing by Nick Mulvenney)