Player of the Match
Player of the Match
299dThe Report by Brydon Coverdale

Harris bowls Australia to last-gasp win

Ryan Harris goes under the knife for knee surgery after this series - he does not know what the future holds. He may play Test cricket again, but at 34 there are no guarantees. Whatever happens, he has delivered one of the great triumphs in Australia's re

Match Centre


Best performances - Batsmen

MJ Clarke
161(301) 17x4 - 0x6
Control %95%
  • Productive Shot
  • leg glance
  • 61 runs
  • 3x4 - 0x6
9 5 21 25 35 17 12 37
DA Warner
145(156) 13x4 - 4x6
Control %85%
  • Productive Shot
  • leg glance
  • 55 runs
  • 3x4 - 2x6
16 14 8 22 32 16 15 22

Best performances - Bowlers

RJ Harris
MG Johnson

Match Details


Australia , elected to bat first

Player Of The Match

Player Of The Series

Series result

Australia won the 3-match series 2-1

Match number


Hours of play (local time)

10am start, Lunch 12.30-13.10, Tea 15.10-15.30, Close 18.00

Match days

1,2,3,4,5 March 2014 (5-day match)

Reserve Umpire

Match Referee

Scorer: Binoy George | Commentator: Sidharth Monga

"So, to win that game, a man with a busted knee comes in to bowl his 25th over, and hits the off stump twice in 3 balls with 140kph yorkers. You really can't argue with that." No, James, you can't. It is great to see Australia back where we have all been used to seeing them. Bloody-minded, tough cricketers who leave it all out on the field. A lot of skill involved too. This pitch didn't have anything for the bowlers on the last day, and they manufactured six wickets with six terrific deliveries. This was just great Test-match cricket. And South Africa have finally been conquered. For the first time in five years. It needed a man on knees that need surgery to bowl two sensational deliveries in the end. That's how difficult it has been to beat South Africa. And we all knew there was only one team that could do it. It had gone missing for a while. We were just waiting for that team to come back and do it. Welcome back, Australia. Thank you, Graeme Smith. Nobody questions the absence of the cover-drive now. Test cricket, you beauty

Time for presentation now "The courage the guys showed was immense," says Graeme Smith, who is cheered off generously. "We have been outplayed in this Test throughout so it was important to show the fight today. I am really proud of that, but it is important to congratulate Michael Clarke and his team. We have had great battles over the past years, and this one will go down too. Obviously it has been pretty emotional few days. Pretty much on my mind at the start of the series, but for some reason kept putting it off. With my daughter in and out of the hospital… Ever since I moved here as an 18-year-old, Newlands has been my home so this was the perfect place to do it. Since the time I started everybody commented on my style of batting saying I won't make it so to end with these runs is a proud achievement. From a leadership perspective, having been part of so many wonderful results is amazing. When you get the job at 22, a lot of growth needs to happen. It took me a few years to figure out what was needed. This is the first series we have lost in almost eight years. We can be hugely proud of it. We have found ways to win. At home, away from home. Lastly I want to thank the fan. To all the people who have approached me on the streets, to all that have bought tickets, to all that have stayed up late to support us, I am really thankful."

"A massive achievement," says David Warner, the Man of the Match and the Series. "Bit nervous towards the end. Still remembered Adelaide. Phenomenal. Probably got my head screwed on for once. The time that di Venuto has put in has been great. Not everyday you get two guys bowling at 150ks at you. Always a challenge. Thoroughly enjoyed it. Massive. Proud of the guys."

"What a series," says Michael Clarke. "Frstly, I want to think Graeme Smith and his team. The world will be a sad place for him retiring. It has been tough away from home for us for a long time. The way the boys have played is tremendous. The series in India and England were not good. To turn it around is great. All the support staff has been great too. I don't like Morne one nit. Him and Dale keep aiming for my head, and they don't miss too often. Playing South Africa, and in South Africa, has been the greatest challenge. Great to have won here. Mitch and Ryan Harris have been exceptional. Patto comes in and takes wicket. Nathan Lyon. Watto. We will enjoy the series now. I didn't enjoy today a lot. A long day. It was getting really close. There is still a lot of work to do to get where South Africa is."

6pm What a great finish this has been. I love how Ryan Harris put it. He was out there in the middle. These words should stay with everyone who underestimates a Test win. "That out there was proper Test-match cricket. That was bloody hard." Just how Test cricket should have been. Australia didn;t want to come back with regrets. They left everything on that pitch

Alan Gaskon: "I'm as gutted as can be, but it's so nice to see the players respect and forgive one another. Especially steyn/clarke! "

5.50pm "That's unbelievable," says Ryan Harris. "Philander batted very very well, but we bowled really really well. I knew the ball was reversing. Got one through Dale, which had been very very difficult. The first two Tests were disappointing for me personally, I should have been bowling like this. My body is done. Mine is ready for a cleanout. That out there was proper Test-match cricket. That was bloody hard."

"We didn't have thoughts of the draw in our head," says Mitchell Johnson. "It was terrific how Rayno bowled today. All of us did our part out there. They did a great job batting. They were in for the long haul. Not much time left. So great. They stuck it out. We stuck it out."

It's 10 to six. What an end to the match. Don't go by the margin in runs. Australia have won this by 27 balls. They have had to grind for every wicket today. South Africa didn't gift them a single stick today. It was good-old fashioned struggle for a win. South Africa did their best to give their captain a farewell gift, but Australia were just too good. There were some really heated-up scenes in the last session, but now both the sides are congratulating each other. Forget childish sledges and howling dogs, there is also great respect for each other in these two sides. Clarke has the longest chat with Graeme Smith and with Dale Steyn

Harris to Morkel, OUT, Bad knees. No matter. Harris does it one last time. Australia celebrate. This is sensational bowling. Now he can get the surgery in peace. What an absolute beaut Harris is. Bowls this full and fast, beats the inside edge with the angle, and bursts through the gate. The off stumps is rattled. So is Morkel. So is Philander. What a great last ball. That reverse through the gate late. Hit the middle of off

M Morkel b Harris 0 (2m 2b 0x4 0x6) SR: 0.00

Lehmann coaching from sidelines. Suggested him to go round the stumps

Harris to Morkel, no run, pushes this down leg. One down. 28 to go

Morne Morkel walks out to his song playing in the stands. There are 29 balls to survive. Harris goes round the wicket

Harris to Steyn, OUT, Oh Ryan Harris you beauty. With knees that need surgery. He produces a yorker. The Aussie spirit lives on. Another injured man walks off. Steyn has played 44 balls. Harris gets an outswing yorker, this is just outside off, Steyn looks to dig it out, gets an inside edge. Off bail of off. That terrible sound for Steyn. How terrific for Harris. The bail almost didn't come off. Not for the first time has a bowling change produced a wicket first ball

DW Steyn b Harris 1 (75m 44b 0x4 0x6) SR: 2.27

"That was a "we've got 2 reviews left" review!" Wouldn't he hate it, James, if he runs out of them and there is a dodgy call in the final over?

134 | (maiden) | SA: 265/8

  • VD Philander51 (105b)
  • DW Steyn1 (43b)
  • MG Johnson34-11-92-3
  • SR Watson9-6-6-0
Johnson to Philander, no run, wide on the crease, gets it to hold its line against the angle, but it is not close enough to make him play
Johnson to Philander, no run, wide length ball, holds its line, left alone again. Another huge cheer

Eight men hoping for a catch

Johnson to Philander, no run, huge huge lbw shout as Johnson slings one past the inside edge. This is surely going down leg, but Clarke has reviewed this. The angle is too big for it to hit the pad within the line and then go on to hit the stumps too. Missing leg by a mile. A review wasted. Precious seconds that could get them an extra over too?
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Fourth innings at Newlands


No. of times batsmen have played 150 or more balls in the fourth innings at this venue, out of 350-plus innings

Long last-stands


Avg. no. of balls faced by de Villiers in the 4th innings in the last 5 years. Only du Plessis (187) and Rogers (128.4) have higher numbers

30 is the new 20


Ryan Harris is the first fast bowler to take 100 Test wickets after making his debut after the age of 30

Warner stats


Number of openers before Warner to hit a century and a fifty in a Test at Newlands, Eddie Barlow and Taufeeq Umar