KOLKATA (AFP) Debutant Alviro Petersen and Hashim Amla smashed fluent centuries for South Africa before India hit back in a dramatic start to the second and final cricket Test on Sunday. Petersen made 100 and Amla scored 114 to lift the Proteas to 218-1, before India ripped through the rest of the batting to leave the tourists on 266-9 by stumps on the opening day at the Eden Gardens. Left-arm seamer Zaheer Khan and off-spinner Harbhajan Singh finished with three wickets each as the tourists lost seven wickets for 32 runs after tea when bad light halted play nine overs early. India, who lost the first Test in Nagpur by an innings and six runs, need a win to square the series and retain their number one position in the official Test rankings. The tourists, who need a draw to take over from India at the top, were well-placed as Petersen and Amla put on 209 for the second wicket after skipper Graeme Smith was removed in the days third over. Smith, who chose to play in the crucial Test despite a fractured finger, made four when he was bowled by Zaheer. Petersen, handed a Test cap at the last minute after wicket-keeper Mark Boucher was ruled out with back spasms, responded with a superb century studded with 16 boundaries. The 29-year-old from Port Elizabeth became only the third South African after Andrew Hudson and Jacques Rudolph to score a Test century on debut. Amla followed his unbeaten 253 in the first Test with another three-figure knock, his ninth in 43 matches. He hit 14 boundaries and a six. Zaheer gave the hosts some respite by removing both batsmen on either side of the tea interval to catches by Indian captain and wicket-keeper Mahendra Singh Dhoni. Harbhajan then dismissed Jacques Kallis for 10 as Venkatsai Laxman made amends for an earlier lapse as he ran back from slip to hold a skier. Laxman, one of Indias safest close-in fielders, had floored a chest-high catch off Harbhajan when Amla was on 60. In his next over, Harbhajan trapped Ashwell Prince and Jean-Paul Duminy leg-before off successive deliveries, but Dale Steyn denied the bowler a hat-trick. AB de Villiers was run out by a direct throw from Zaheer as he backed up for a sharp single, leaving South Africa tottering at 254-7. Paul Harris and Steyn departed early, leaving the last pair of Wayne Parnell and Morne Morkell at the crease. The Eden Gardens wicket, sporting a greenish tinge, provided even bounce and enabled the batsmen to play their shots. Both teams made one change from the sides that played in the first Test. India welcomed back seasoned batsman Laxman, who missed the first Test with a finger injury, in place of Wriddhiman Saha. AB de Villers was nominated to keep wicket for the tourists after Boucher missed out. SCOREBOARD SOUTH AFRICA, first innings G. Smith b Zaheer 4 Petersen c Dhoni b Zaheer 100 Amla c Dhoni b Zaheer 114 Kallis c Laxman b Harbhajan 10 AB de Villiers run out 12 A. Prince lbw b Harbhajan 1 J.P. Duminy lbw b Harbhajan 0 D. Steyn lbw b Mishra 5 P. Harris c Dhoni b Sharma 1 W. Parnell not out 2 M. Morkel not out 3 EXTRAS: (b1, lb4, nb9) 14 TOTAL: (for nine wkts, 81 overs) 266 Fall of wickets: 1-9 (Smith), 2-218 (Petersen), 3-229 (Amla), 4-251 (Kallis), 5-253 (Prince), 6-253 (Duminy), 7-254 (de Villiers), 8-255 (Harris), 9-261 (Steyn). BOWLING Zaheer 21-5-77-3 Sharma 17-3-56-1 (nb6) Mishra 20-3-68-1 (nb3) Harbhajan 23-2-60-3. Toss: South Africa Umpires: Ian Gould (ENG) and Steve Davis (AUS) TV umpire: Shavir Tarapore (IND) Match referee: Andy Pycroft (ZIM)