South Africa batsman Hashim Amla plays through the square during the first day's play of the first Test against Australia at the Gabba in Brisbane on Friday. Photo: AFP
Hashim Amla and Jacques Kallis became South Africa's greatest scoring partnership as the Proteas dominated Australia's bowlers to seize control on day one of the first Brisbane Test on Friday.
The pair rammed home the advantage with an unbeaten century stand as the world's best team blunted the Australian attack to have the South Africans in command after winning the toss.
When bad light stopped play eight overs before scheduled stumps, South Africa were 255 for two with Amla unbeaten on 90 and Kallis providing solid support on 84.
Kallis previously held his country's aggregate record with current coach Gary Kirsten at 3592 runs in partnerships throughout 64 Tests, and has now surpassed that with Amla following their 136-run partnership for the third wicket.
At day's end, the pair had accumulated 3607 runs together in their 58th Test while Amla, the number one-ranked Test batsman, passed 5,000 Test runs.
South Africa reached their position of strength through resolute batting on a flattening wicket, mixed with some missed Australian chances and the rub of the green.
It was a strong statement of intent by the South Africans in their bid to follow up their first-ever series win in Australia on their last tour, in 2008-09.
"We wanted to really put our peg in the ground and I think we did that really well," opening batsman Alviro Petersen said.
"Two wickets down, we're in a comfortable position but tomorrow's going to be really important, to back that up and make sure today's work doesn't go to waste."
Kallis had a reprieve on 42 in the over after tea when he miscued Peter Siddle to mid-off where he was safely held by Nathan Lyon, but umpire Asaf Raud checked back whether Siddle had over-stepped.
Replays showed Siddle's heel on the line and the TV umpire ruled a no-ball for Kallis to stay at the crease -- much to Australia's anguish.
Siddle added to Australia's frustrations when he put down a caught and bowl chance six overs later when Amla was on 74 and South Africa at 206 for two.
Skipper Graeme Smith was out following a review in the 11th over after umpire Billy Bowden initially turned down James Pattinson's lbw appeal.
Television replays clearly showed the ball hitting Smith's back pad in front of the wicket and he was given out, with Pattinson enthusiastically celebrating the verdict.