A century from South Africa opener Aiden Markram helped pile on the early runs on the opening day of the first Test at Centurion on Tuesday, only for the West Indies to fight its way back into the contest and have its hosts 314-8 at close of play.
An emotional Markram celebrated his recall to the Test side with a 115-run knock after the home side had won the toss and elected to bat, racing to 99-0 at lunch and 221-1 before the tourists bounced back with seven wickets in the evening session.
The 28-year-old Markram was teary-eyed after reaching his sixth Test century in a triumphant return after being dropped for the three-Test series in Australia at the turn of the year.
Markram put on 141 for the first wicket with Dean Elgar, who shrugged off the disappointment of being stripped of the captaincy and hit 71 before Jermaine Blackwood’s leaping catch had him snagged off Alzarri Joseph.
South Africa advanced to 206-1 at tea and was on 221 when debutant Tony de Zorzi was needlessly run out after a patient 28. West Indies wicketkeeper Joshua da Silva showed some deft handwork to catch him short and claim the second wicket.
New Test captain Temba Bavuma, taking over from Elgar after South Africa lost badly in Australia, followed two balls later after being trapped leg before wicket by Joseph, who then had Markram clean bowled as he slipped in a speedy yorker.
Markram faced 174 balls and hit 18 fours in a determined innings on his home ground after a recall from new coach Shukri Conrad, who is also now the only selector in a revamp of the South Africa Test side.
Joseph was the pick of the bowlers and finished the day on 3-60, but there were also wickets late in the day for others in the bowling line-up.
Shannon Gabriel banged in a ball that rushed onto Heinrich Klaasen and saw him mistime his shot to be caught for 20 while Kemar Roach trapped Senuran Muthusamy lbw for three.
Keegan Petersen was the last recognised batsmen to go, lbw to Kyle Mayers for 14.
Kagiso Rabada then nicked Jason Holder to Blackwood at second slip for eight, meaning South Africa had lost their last seven wickets for 79 runs.
Marco Jansen and debutant bowler George Coetzee were unbeaten when bad light stopped play.
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