South Africa v Australia, 2nd Test, Port Elizabeth, 4th day

Series level after Steyn magic

The Report by Andrew McGlashan

February 23, 2014

Comments: 430 | Text size: A | A

South Africa 423 (Duminy 123, de Villiers 116, Elgar 83, Lyon 5-130) and 270 for 5 dec (Amla 127*) beat Australia 246 (Warner 70, Morkel 3-63) and 216 (Rogers 107, Warner 66, Steyn 4-55) by 231 runs
Scorecard and ball-by-ball details

Cullinan: When Steyn gets a sniff, he is a tough nut


Dale Steyn removed Brad Haddin's middle stump again, South Africa v Australia, 2nd Test, Port Elizabeth, 4th day, February 23, 2014
Dale Steyn and South Africa showed why they are No. 1 © Associated Press
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It doesn't matter how accurate the South Africa Meteorological Department is. Dale Steyn's spell-binding afternoon burst of reverse swing inspired the home side to a 231-run victory in the dying moments of the fourth day to level the series. South Africa ripped out nine wickets in the evening session while Australia lost 10 for 90 in total after an opening stand of 126 between Chris Rogers and David Warner.

With a poor forecast for the final day, Graeme Smith, who declared 40 minutes before lunch, was desperate to wrap up the win and not leave anything resting on the vagaries of the climate. He claimed the extra half an hour, which began with Australia seven down, and Steyn claimed his fourth when he trapped Ryan Harris with an marginal lbw.

Rogers, who had compiled a magnificent fourth Test hundred, was run out by the substitute fielder Alviro Petersen at mid-off ending a 237-ball stay. It appeared he was trying to give Peter Siddle the spinner to face, rather than Steyn, but Smith was then told the light was too poor for his quick bowlers. Up stepped Dean Elgar to trap Nathan Lyon lbw although subsequent replays showed he had found a thin edge but Australia had no reviews left.

Given the way South Africa had been hammered in Centurion, the issues they faced over the balance of their side, the lack of a main spinner, the loss of one of their frontline bowlers and a pitch that did its best to defy fast bowling it will have to go down as one of their finest victories. Australia had also started their pursuit of 448 with a rollicking partnership between Rogers and Warner that, if not quite making thoughts of a world-record chase realistic, left a South Africa victory push a distant prospect.

South Africa's opening began to be forged shortly before tea when JP Duminy ended the first-wicket stand by removing Warner. Duminy had earlier given Warner a life on 36 - the latest reprieve for him in this series - when he could not hold a return catch diving to his left as he collided with Rogers at the non-striker's end. However, he and Elgar, with his left-arm spin, were causing difficulties for both openers out of the footmarks and Duminy then beat Warner on the back foot with one that straightened just enough to clip leg stump.

Without Warner's impetus - which had included four boundaries in four balls off Morne Morkel in a stirring riposte to being peppered with short deliveries - South Africa were able to choke Australia's scoring. And then they started to get the ball to reverse. Steyn, after an indifferent spell with the new ball, had given a hint of what he may be able to produce with a period round the wicket to the openers; for new batsmen the ball reversing is a much tougher prospect.

Alex Doolan became stuck, uncertain against spin before tea and pace afterwards. He was worked over by Morkel and Vernon Philander, twice providing edges that fell short of the wicketkeeper (which went to the TV umpire) and first slip, before pushing hard enough that a nick carried to Smith. Shaun Marsh's first ball from Philander was full and straight, the batsman getting his front pad too far across, as he completed a pair to contrast sharply with his comeback hundred last week. Then came Steyn.

His team-mates helped, Morkel and Philander building the pressure on Michael Clarke with a series of dot balls, before Steyn returned to produce one of those spells that sends a tingle down the spine. Fourth ball he had Clarke pushing at a delivery outside off and the edge was brilliantly held, low down, by Faf du Plessis at second slip. Due to the low bounce, and edges not carrying, the slips stood very close which made the catch even more impressive.

With Steven Smith in his sights, Steyn then went straight, the ball ducked back into the pads this time, and middle stump would have been its destination. However, the best, at least in terms of the spectacle, was still to come when, for the second time in the match, Brad Haddin had his middle stump uprooted - perhaps the best evidence that even if a batsman knows what is coming, sometimes a bowler is just too good.

Steyn was given a brief rest after a mesmeric five-over spell that brought 3 for 11, but Australia's collapse continued when Mitchell Johnson was given lbw on review after Philander had swung one back into his pads.

Amid all this, Rogers was adding a fourth hundred to his Ashes centuries at Durham, Melbourne and Sydney. He had found himself under a modicum of scrutiny after three failures to start the series, but drove three crisp boundaries in Steyn's first two overs and was soon playing with the confidence that characterised his tons against England.

He could have been removed before tea. In the last over of the session he chased an extremely wide delivery from Steyn, but the appeal was turned down by Kumar Dharmasena and Smith declined to review only for Hot Spot to show a clear mark on the toe end of the bat. Much later, with what would have been the final ball of the day if the extra half hour had not been granted, he glanced Morkel down the leg side where de Villiers dived low to his right to claim the catch. Richard Illingworth initially gave him out, but then asked Aleem Dar, the third umpire, to check whether it had carried and the pictures showed it bounced short.

As the overs ebbed away and the sun began to disappear towards the horizon, it appeared Rogers would at least carry his team into the final day and keep alive the chances of a weather-aided escape. But the sun had not quite set on South Africa's chances and now they can open the curtains tomorrow morning after a night of celebration rather than worry.

Andrew McGlashan is an assistant editor at ESPNcricinfo

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Posted by   on (February 27, 2014, 5:30 GMT)

thozar; you need professional help.

Posted by thozar on (February 25, 2014, 23:19 GMT)

I agree Johnson has done very well against England and in the first test against RSA. There is no reason that his stats wont get any better if he played in India now. At the same time, there is no reason why his stats wont get any worse if he played in India now. His biggest test will come when he bowls to some of the world's best batsmen in India. Unfortunately in prev occasions, he has failed miserably.

You say England are a good side now. How can they be a good side when they were blown to smithereens in the recent tour that they didn't even put up a fight? Even in their last whitewash they did well with Collingwood scoring a double century and KP getting a century. I think Cook also got a century. This time, only their new guy scored one century. Admit it, they are a poor team and you were still unable to beat them in England and instead got thrashed. We will expose how poor England are this summer.

Posted by thozar on (February 25, 2014, 23:08 GMT)

@Shaggy076, you said Lyon has "cleaned all-comers in Australia". I wrote that his average of 32 in Australia is no big deal and that is equal to his career average. An average of 32 is not "cleaning all-comers" by any stretch of imagination. In addition, even in the spin friendly conditions of India, he has performed poorly. Now, ask yourself, who is the deluded one here? I have answered your question to the point. You really need to come out of the "Australia is great" myth to see reality.

Dhoni has way better record than Haddin everywhere. I posted about Haddin's record against teams other than England. Why are you ignoring those? Are those numbers that I pulled from cricinfo flawed too? Has Haddin done something remarkable against other teams that was somehow missed in cricinfo archives and record books?

Posted by Shaggy076 on (February 25, 2014, 19:32 GMT)

Thomas; Try and read it closely I didn't say Lyon was the best spin bowler n the world but according to your deluded logic a paceman is judged by playing in the sub continent. Then as soon as talking about a spinner you again judge by record in sub continent that is the opposite logic to what you applied to the paceman you appear to be the deluded one only using stats that suit your argument. Dhoni has been found wanting away from the sub continent with poor footwork. How is my logic on Johnson wrong his recent form in Australia and South Africa is better than his career form, he is in the best form of his life so why wouldn't his figures be better now in India thanwhen he was in lesser form. My messages are a lot less one eyed than yours, yet you calling me deluded. I have never put Australia above South Africa and that is our rightful place. Look at England's standing and there form prior to the recent Ashes they are not a poor side by any means. You my friend are the deluded one.

Posted by thozar on (February 25, 2014, 18:59 GMT)

@Shaggy076, I missed this little gem of yours "there is no reason why his stats wouldnt be better in India now he is a better bowler". Bangla recently drew a test against Sri Lanka. There is no reason why they cannot draw a test against RSA. New Zealand recently won a test against India. There is no reason why they cannot win against RSA. lol. Johnson bullied ordinary batsmen in Oz. Let him try doing that against the likes of Kohli, Dhawan, Pujara, Rahane, Dhoni. The average will go above 30 again, hahaha. Dhawan alone would finish his career.

Posted by thozar on (February 25, 2014, 18:56 GMT)

and, @Shaggy076, re: Dhoni vs Haddin, you are entitled to believe anything you want but stats dont lie. Which batsman do bowlers fear the most? Just because Haddin rescued his team couple of times against England at *home*, it does not make him a better player. What do you say about Dhoni's double hundred studded with boundaries and sixers against your team last year? Can Haddin even dream of playing such an innings? Haddin is an England bully, that is all he is. He has not performed against anyone else. Even against England, he has performed only at home.

@srinivasulu.adiraju, well said. Dhoni has won ODI world cup, T20 world cup, Champions trophy, IPL, CLT20, test #1, ODI #1, T20I #1, you name it. What has Michael Clarke achieved other than winning against England that too at home? Unfortunately for Dhoni and India the away tests have not gone our way for a while. That will change with our England tour this summer.

Posted by thozar on (February 25, 2014, 18:48 GMT)

@Shaggy076, I have read several messages of yours and always felt you were a deluded Oz fan fascinated by your ordinary team based on their victories that too at home against an ordinary England side. But this comment of yours takes the cake "Lyon is the best spinner in the world". hahaha, your great Lyon was taken to the cleaners in India where even Monty and Swann performed better. At home also he has been ordinary taking his wickets at 32 apiece which is close to his career average. Did you even bother checking Ashwin's and Jadeja's home record? The English suffered from the same "perform in the Ashes and be considered a great" syndrome and the Aussies have taken over now. Hyping ordinary players as great ones.

As for Eng's win against India, at that time they were a team at their peak and we were in a transition phase. Your team came after they left and were soundly thrashed 4-0. If we play the same Eng team now anywhere we will also beat them comprehensively. No big deal.

Posted by   on (February 25, 2014, 12:40 GMT)

The SAfs might be rightly proud of Steyn being the Best bowler in the world, he surely is good at Reverse swing on slow tracks. Similarly Johnson is good on Bouncy tracks. But you can count on the fingers Bowlers who use Reverse swing to great effect, specially Pakistani bowlers Wasim & Waqar were masters, Malinga & even Zaheer to an extent. So Steyn is not a special Magician of the Art. But i cannot recall a Bowler after perhaps Ambrose/ Walsh who bowls those unplayable head-height bouncers which flies up to Slips to create Carnage. Recentlly Johnson has done that & if he continues his form all over consistently, it will be a Phenomenon for Modern cricket. Keep it Up Mitch!

Posted by Shaggy076 on (February 25, 2014, 9:04 GMT)

Thosar ; You were a lot closer to losing than winning, whilst we won by 280 runs and 6 wickets. Mediocre sides dont beat the worlds best by that margin on there home soil. As for Haddin over Dhoni, I just know if the team was in trouble which person I would prefer to bat and I know who is the better glove man too. You can have your preference I dont care.

Posted by Shaggy076 on (February 25, 2014, 9:00 GMT)

Thosar; Ok I take your points we are pretenders that did beat South Africa in a test away. South Africa are #1 and I have never debated that but this improved Australian team are contenders judging from the state of this series. I take it you believe Lyon is the best spinner in the world as opposite to your point about pace bowling, a judge of a good spinner is Australian conditions and Lyon has cleaned up all comers. As for Johnson his recent stats say he has improved at a dramatic rate in Australia and South Africa there is no reason why his stats wouldnt be better in India now he is a better bowler. Yes we beat a poor England side the same England side that beat India home and away so where does that put India in the chain. Australia pitches vary throughout the country pitches are the same year in year out no matter who the opposiition. If you were to watch cricket in Australia you would know that.

Posted by   on (February 25, 2014, 7:39 GMT)

People tend to judge on what happened in the final moments of the game. (The finish thing is exaggerated on these lines.) That's why a few umpiring lapses towards the end are cited here to belittle SA's tremendous comeback. Oz too had benefited until the collapse started. Perhaps a struggling team tends to get bad decisions a bit more. As for DRS, it was quite good in this match too; it's the fewer number of referrals allowed than necessary that created problem.

Posted by   on (February 25, 2014, 6:52 GMT)

All this discussion of pitch is rubbish. Quality players of 90s and 2000s did not care whether it was a flat deck or a green pitch .The quality of cricket has gone down

Posted by srinivasulu.adiraju on (February 25, 2014, 6:50 GMT)

Where is Mr.Ian now? He specifically commented on Dhoni the other day. Where is he now? How come Mr.Clarke and Team lost this test after winning first test and with such a huge momentum for them after winning 5-0 against England? I am a avid fan of Dhoni. Dhoni has done many things to Indian Team that others only dream of during night and day time. Being aggressive doesn't mean shouting all nonsense at others or provoking others to do some thing nonsense. He does his job with highest distinction. I agree there are few series to forgot but Ian Sir, please consider what he has achieved and will be able to do next. I am very disappointed at his comments and demand a open apology from him regarding his comments on Dhoni. Dhoni! Even when the world is divided into two, Please do remember that I will be on your side, may be only you and me are left on other side.

Posted by thozar on (February 25, 2014, 6:50 GMT)

@Shaggy076, well of course you would pick Haddin ahead of Dhoni because he is Oz, ha ha ha. Did you know that even Watling and Prior have scored centuries against India while Haddin has not scored even a 50? Just scoring runs against England does not count. Even the Bangladeshi keeper scored plenty of runs against them. You need to score against better bowling sides. Dhoni has scored big against all teams in all conditions. Oz fans surely would not have forgotten his 200 last year when he mercilessly plundered their hapless bowlers. He is also a ODI/T20 world cup and champions trophy winning captain and sometimes even bowls. There is simply no comparison between a champion like Dhoni and a mediocre player like Haddin.

Posted by thozar on (February 25, 2014, 6:38 GMT)

@Shaggy076, no matter what you say, every team including Oz prepare pitches in favor of their team. What is the point of home advantage otherwise? You got to win away and that is where lies a team's greatness. SA do that time and again and have not lost an away series for over 7 years. Oz lost 2 away series just in the last year. That is why SA are a champion side and Oz just the pretenders. Oz just beat a poor England team which even Bangladesh would have defeated. That was no big deal. About your victory against RSA, RSA almost always start slow. We too were close to winning the first test. We dominated that test that RSA panicked and were content to get a draw.

I know Oz fans will bring India vs NZL whenever they cannot say anything in favor of their team. India was clearly the better side and if not for poor umpiring decisions, we would have won the series. NZ had luck going their way and played out of their skins. We are a young team and we will beat Eng in Eng which you couldnt.

Posted by thozar on (February 25, 2014, 6:29 GMT)

@Shaggy076, no, not just one match. The comment on Haddin was based on a mediocre average of 35 after playing 56 matches. He has scored 4 centuries, 3 against England and 1 against NZL, both average bowling sides. Despite feasting off the hapless English attack in the last Ashes, Haddin only averages a respectable, but by no means great, 43 against them. He has also scored 11 out of his 17 50s against Eng. It is clear that he is a mediocre attack bully. And get this, he has no 100s or even 50s against India. rotfl. In India, this average player has an average of 26. Even Prior has better average.

Re: Steyn vs Johnson, the true test of a fast bowler comes in the sub-continent, especially India as we possess great batsmen and the pitches are not so fast bowler friendly. Steyn averages 20 in India, Johnson, wait for it, 40. That is the difference in class between the two bowlers.

Posted by Shaggy076 on (February 25, 2014, 6:12 GMT)

Yentile; Please your take on Johnson lacks any semblance of truth. Australia did not produce one green pitch in the recent Ashes, the South African first wicket was up and down but not green. Johnson took 7 for at Adelaide oval on a flat dry deck and we all know what Steyn did there last year. Steyn I a class act and so is JOhnson - one off test and your ready to jump on him. SO far too games in the series and its 1-2 between Johnson and Steyn so I wouldn't say that is a comprehensive victory to Steyn.

Posted by Shaggy076 on (February 25, 2014, 6:08 GMT)

thozar; You make Cpt.Meanstar look like a scholar. You gathered all that from one test match. What did you take from India's thrashing at the hands of NZ. By the way I'd pick Haddin well before Dhoni as well as Watling, Sangakkara, Prior, the Bangladeshi keeper as well.

Posted by cricketsubh on (February 25, 2014, 4:57 GMT)

agree with u Dravid pujara gravitas Atheist ai the moment in cricket all team win easyly at home if SA beat AUS nothing special if AUS beat SA and win the series it will be a great achievement gor aus my team for 3rd test 1.warner.2.rogers.3.doolan.4.smith.5.clarke.6.watson.7.haddin.8.bird/patinson.9.jhonson.10.siddil.11.haris.i drop lyon becoz i do not think aus need spinner in these conditions and lyon canot run through a side he is not a match winning bowler u need bowler to take wickets i fast bowler will be the batter option then lyon.plz publish this

Posted by   on (February 25, 2014, 3:54 GMT)

Steyn was magnificent to watch, as always. Australia have had a weakness against swing bowling (esp reverse swing) for years; doesn't matter what the team is. Anderson couldn't swing the ball in the Ashes and Broad was useless, so England could do nothing. Good to see SA exploit the weakness.

Posted by Abhi_Kashyap on (February 25, 2014, 3:40 GMT)

@Dravid_Pujara_Gravitas_Atheist I am not sure you know what you are talking about.. You cannot compare this series to India and Australia.. Indians do prepare slow low bounce wickets to counter aussie pacers.. and as for spinners Indians do play ordinary spinners well. ( not extraordinary ones like Swaany and Monty).. This PE track was of slow and low nature.. I dont know how you decided it was made to help South African fast bowlers.. if anything, it would have helped aussie spinners.. as Lyon is far better than any saffers spinner. and as for quick pitches, there isn't much home to talk about because Aussie pacers and saffers are on par here.. Unlike Aussies playing in India.. FYI, Saffers haven't lost a series for more than half a decade now... away for home..

Posted by jmcilhinney on (February 24, 2014, 23:10 GMT)

@Pelham_Barton on (February 24, 2014, 19:33 GMT), I was referring more specifically to overcoming Mitchell Johnson, who was the most significant factor in Australia's victories over England in Australia, although not the only one, and over SA in the first game of this series.

Posted by polo69 on (February 24, 2014, 20:25 GMT)

Pakistan u/19s make final of World Cup, SA reaffirm their talent and number one status, NZ pummel India. Meanwhile England are in disarray and India are 20/20 clones, primarily focused on Bollywood contracts and auctions. The ICC dishes out 5 tests of England vs India while the world number one side have one test vs Zimbabwe until November. The world deserves to see this great side and their number one and two ranked batters and bowlers more often than that judging by these posts. Unfortunately the greedy 3 aren't promoting this notion and lining their pockets in the interest of what they believe is bums on seats, endless Ashes series and tours to each other, irrespective of quality of play. I for one would rather watch NZ vs SA right now and be clamoring to play these guys to get our players exposed to this level than watching a defeated England play five tests against an uninterested India. Greed doesn't belong in cricket ... ICC should hang their heads in shame

Posted by wapuser on (February 24, 2014, 20:23 GMT)

Three reminder points for OZ fans . Aus is not the best Team. MJ is not the best fast bowler and SA are not Eng. (The best attck should be able to play at any given pitch as SA does at any pitch in any country i forgot when was the last time SA lost an away SERIES)

Posted by Dravid_Pujara_Gravitas_Atheist on (February 24, 2014, 19:59 GMT)

Posted by GRVJPR on (February 24, 2014, 0:52 GMT) Its a test match won in home conditions. I don't know why people go ga ga over home wins. Most teams win matches at home. And about dale steyn wickets, it's like Aswin picking up wickets at home. Nothing Special!

I agree with you on this. In fact, we beat the same Australia 4-0 at home. It'll be special only if Australia wins this series. If SA wins this series, there is nothing special. Same old home track bully thing that almost all teams are doing right now.

Posted by Pelham_Barton on (February 24, 2014, 19:33 GMT)

@ jmcilhinney on (February 23, 2014, 22:02 GMT) - Featured comment: I agree with much of what you say, but must take issue with your final sentence. What SA did at Port Elizabeth is very similar to what England did at Chester-Le-Street within the last year. In this series, SA are not being asked to attempt what England could not do, which is to beat Australia in Australia.

Posted by thozar on (February 24, 2014, 18:34 GMT)

This result proves what we, non Aussie fans, always knew. That Australia are an ordinary side. Aussie fans boasted about Haddin being the best wk batsman in the world after he scored some cheap runs against the ordinary England bowling attack. After seeing his stumpts go cartwheeling against Steyn twice in a test, Aussie fans would know that he is only a mediocre bowling bully. Aussie fans should at least now accept that DeVilliers and Dhoni are the best wk batsmen in the world. What happened to the great Mitchell express? Did it crash? lol. oh, wait till we see some malingering from their great bowler Harris. He will feign some injury till he gets to play England again when miraculously he will be in full fitness, rotfl. You got to protect that precious average you know.

Posted by GrindAR on (February 24, 2014, 18:10 GMT)

I'm pinching myself... I called it a 4 day match on the preview post. And Smith used his spin options very effectively... to get break through s... What I did not predict is, Amla getting back to form that too at sound fluency he is known for... So, 3rd will be a firework...

Posted by Greatest_Game on (February 24, 2014, 16:38 GMT)

@ disco_bob. Fair enough mate. My post was like batting against Elgar, & you had tossed some irresistible "hindsight pies." I'll willingly grant the healthy edge on the "pitch jab." The "doctored wicket" claims flew in thick & fast, & I was not taking notes.

It was a bloody exciting game, & I have to admit that before Warner fell I was beginning to feel queasy & thinking of a rain dance!

I agree "theres a bit more than starting slowly," which for example SA did not do at the Oval in Eng, 2012, when Eng took just 2 wickets in an inns defeat. SA "start badly" when they are favorites & don't have anything to prove, but they are phenomenal with their backs against the wall. It seems they need a fight to get going! To my mind Centurion was a choke of sorts for SA, and PE was a choke of sorts for Aus. Newlands promises to be a cracker as both have choked, & both are primed for battle.

P.S. I was at the Wanderers for every day of THAT test in 1970! 21 years undefeated - what a record!

Posted by geoffboyc on (February 24, 2014, 14:49 GMT)

Hope this result and performance puts into perspective some of the Aussie post Ashes triumphalism on here about being the No 1 team in the universe. They could still win this series but it's clearer than ever now that only some monumental performances by Brad Haddin and Mitchell Johnson's pace marked the gap between the two Ashes teams. Even allowing for England massively under-performing, there wouldn't otherwise have been too much between the teams in Australia. The batting fragility of the Aussies was there to see in those Tests and hasn't got much better yet. On to Cape Town and what could be a very interesting end to the series.

Posted by   on (February 24, 2014, 13:53 GMT)

Can anyone please enlighten me on this "reverse swing" stuff? How come some bowlers can do it and some can't? Is it purely the bowler's capability of getting the ball to reverse or do external factors (wind velocity/direction, pitch condition etc.) also play a role? Was there reverse swing in the days of say - Roberts, Holding, Garner, Lillee et al? Thanks.

Posted by coarsecricketer on (February 24, 2014, 13:11 GMT)

@CustomKid Your prediction at the end of day 1 was spot on! I think back in Oz's "golden years" they could afford to bat like an express train - 1) because Hayden, Gilchrist et al. were seriously talented batsmen who could play like that and not get out; 2) because their bowling attack gave them massive confidence, so that whatever total they came up with, the likes of Warne and McGrath could always bowl the opposition out for less. Alas, neither 1) nor 2) apply any more... The Aussie batsmen must now apply themselves and graft as lesser mortals have always had to.

Posted by stormy16 on (February 24, 2014, 12:49 GMT)

I think the most significant factor from the game is what we already knew but somehow SA wanted to question itself in the first test! SA have the best bowlers and batters in the world and they were all on show on a difficult wicket and Aus were I am afraid no where. Not finding fault with Aus but on paper no one even comes close to AB and Amla and they both got hundreds and no one comes close to Steyn and Vern and they both had a major impact on the game. SA also have plugged another hole with JP and Elgar the only possible weak spots in an otherwise formidable line up and what's more they may have also resolved the spinners role. The problem Aus had was the conditions were totally foreign and they had no guns for the battle. The batters couldnt cope with the swing and the bowlers couldnt swing the ball - bascially there was no way out of this one as pace alone simply wouldnt do for this battle.

Posted by Yentile on (February 24, 2014, 12:07 GMT)

Comparing Johnson & Steyn is chalk and cheese, innit? Steyn can extract something from almost any surface, while Johnson needs his greens!!! Aus went to SA with their tails have after thrashing a pretty much rubbish Eng team. Got a feeling they will be sent home with their tail firmly between their legs! SA to win at Newlands with a day to spare. I'm a englishman.

Posted by SherjilIslam on (February 24, 2014, 11:40 GMT)

As I have said it before...SA are a very good test side and can't be ruled out before the game is over. I have seen them bouncing back from the position where hardly anyone would have given them a chance (Adelaide & Wanderers against India). So this bounce back performance was more or less expected. Like to say few words about Dale Styne..well I don't have any!! Salute and Respect..you are certainly one of the greatest the game has ever seen..and this is coming from an India fan.

Posted by   on (February 24, 2014, 11:17 GMT)

I don't understand what the fuss is all about. MJ had ONE bad game and he is ordinary now. Pitch in Brisbane and Adelaide and even later days of MCG and SCG were pretty flat - didn't stop him from taking wickets. This game MJ wasn't at his best and SA also adapted quicker when facing him. But everybody has a bad game. To all the guys telling johnson to take wickets without bowling bouncers - why don't u ask steyn to take wickets without swing (both reverse and conventional), or tell philander to take wickets by not bowling at the 4th stump line. Bowling fast and short is a skill, just like swing and accuracy, and johnson in full flow is extremely good at it. So lets appreciate his skill, instead of crying foul.

Posted by TommytuckerSaffa on (February 24, 2014, 11:14 GMT)

@kr_kinshuk I am a huge supporter for DRS and it saves complete howlers like we see whenever anyone has to play against India (the only team who disallows it). The reasons for the instances you spoke of was the sheer noise created by the Band at PE which made it difficult for anyone to hear the nicks and edges.

DRS is here to stay and thank goodness for that. We didnt start flying using jets, we started by jumping off cliffs with feathers attached to us. Technology takes time to develop into perfection. Ignoring it from the outset is pure folly. The fact that the BCCI stands alone in its argument speaks volumes.

Posted by krishna_cricketfan on (February 24, 2014, 11:09 GMT)

It is a pity that the series is a 3 match one. We should be having 5 match series between these 2 sides. Such a fantastic all-round cricket.

Posted by kr_kinshuk on (February 24, 2014, 11:07 GMT)

And btw, the Aussies made a real hash of it. Graeme Smith couldn't have done them a bigger favour by declaring when he did. Their batsmen really missed a golden opportunity because if ever there was a track to hunt down a 400 plus target, this was it.

But congratulations to South Africa on pulling off the win in spite of some appalling umpiring that denied them those wickets early in the innings.

P.S: Dhoni, if you are following all these games, I hope you are noticing how teams that are batting first are performing better.

Posted by Cricpops on (February 24, 2014, 11:07 GMT)

Well done SA. This is the cricket that we need. Full credit to Smith and Co. for showing determination and taking brave decision. Brave captains take calculated risk with timely decision and bring glory for the team and fans. Can't wait for the decider !!

Posted by fair_paly_1 on (February 24, 2014, 11:03 GMT)

I couldn't understand how they could allow that band to play continuously. Must be so off-putting not only to the players and the umpires who couldn't hear any nicks but the spectators too. Test match is not T20 cricket for such noise to be allowed.

Posted by kr_kinshuk on (February 24, 2014, 11:01 GMT)

contd.

and yet, merely because it's BCCI that happens to be questioning the DRS everyone ignores this giant huge elephant in the room and doesn't question the obvious glaring faults in the way DRS is being implemented.

Posted by kr_kinshuk on (February 24, 2014, 10:59 GMT)

Why isn't anyone questioning DRS after the several instances on which its limitations were exposed in this match. DRS, as it is currently implemented, shields umpires' incompetence and basically shifts the blame on to the poor captain.

At least twice in this game, Smith, whose professional qualifications don't include adjudicating on umpiring decisions was forced into a situation where he had to take the call on very close decisions. With only two reviews available to him he didn't take a chance on those reviews.

So, in the end, the wrong decision was made and all that happened was that the umpire escaped criticism for basically not being able to do their job.

Also, I don't get the umpire's call philosophy in DRS. For the same delivery, the decision could go either way depending on how the umpire felt. So, you basically pray that the umpire's gut feel is in your favour.

It is these and several other issues that make DRS in its current form, incredibly arbitrary and yet, contd.

Posted by   on (February 24, 2014, 10:54 GMT)

Excellent Game of Cricket. Congrats Aus and RSA :) In another view, Young Team India played better game in both RSA and NZ on their own condition. But what the missed is the killer instinct to finish the game as Aus did in the first Test. This young team will learn faster. Just Enjoying the Game of Cricket...

Posted by mthi4life on (February 24, 2014, 10:42 GMT)

Australia have the best bowler between the two teams in Johnson but combined SA have a better bowling unit. and better batting unit so its safe to say that if SA keep Johnson quiet then they will win the Series and if they don't they will loose the Series. It will be interesting to see what kind of wicket we get on Cape town

Posted by Petesta on (February 24, 2014, 10:24 GMT)

To the australians complaining about the pitch (which admittedly a good number of you aren't - well done): You do know PE is always a bit on the slow side by SA standards? You did see how many Aus and SA batsmen got hit on the shoulder's, gloves, helmets? I reckon there were at least 15 such blows. You did see how the pitch sped up on days 2-3? You did see how it didn't crumble or turn square on day 4? You do realise SA took 20 Aus wickets in 130 overs with an all-pace attack and 2 part time spinners? You do realise it was a perfectly acceptable cricket wicket - far more acceptable than Centurion which proved impossible for SA to bat on on day 4? Or were you sleeping on the other side of the world during all of this and just looking at the score card each morning?

Posted by AnthonyMD on (February 24, 2014, 10:16 GMT)

An awesome effort by South Africa, I went to bed just after lunch with Australia for all intents and purposes comfortable at 0-100 odd, I thought when I got up Australia may be one or two down at stumps and we would be pushing for a possible albeit improbable victory. Imagine my horror as I turned on the computer to check the score. I have just watched the highlights on TV, I hate to see Australia lose, but the bowling by South Africa throughout the whole second Test was really impressive and far be it for me to resent high quality Test cricket. Australia got well and truly stitched up by the better side. Enjoy the victory South African fans, it was a great one.

Posted by farkin on (February 24, 2014, 10:15 GMT)

the last 2 test matches between rsa and Australia need to be investigated . both side performance has changed that much something maybe going on

Posted by Shaggy076 on (February 24, 2014, 10:06 GMT)

SHK1; You cant claim extra time on the last day. They took an extra half an hour on the 4th day if Australia got through the day they would start half an hour later the next day. Its not extra time but borrowing time from future days.

Posted by Marktc on (February 24, 2014, 10:03 GMT)

Consider that SA were a bowler down, used two part timers as spinners, dropped too many catches...and still managed a convincing win. If they have their full team and they filed properly, Cape Town could be an awesome test to watch.

Posted by creebo777 on (February 24, 2014, 9:55 GMT)

Half an hours play not allowed on day 5 i think

Posted by Kulaputra on (February 24, 2014, 9:52 GMT)

Given all that is happening in cricket, one person raised the question - Was the game fixed ? I hope not as my faith in test cricket is still high

Posted by CustomKid on (February 24, 2014, 9:37 GMT)

coarsecricketer on (February 24, 2014, 8:25 GMT) I said at the end of day 1 watch sa rack up about 350+ then watch the Aussies try and reach the target in 50 overs. I'm a Aussies supporter, the problem is they don't know how to graft runs, they never have and never will. Even back in the golden years of Hayden, langer, gilly, Waugh, Martyn etc they couldn't do it, it's just not in our DNA. I shouldn't say never but it is very rare and when any Australian team needs to bat time you've pretty much got the game in the bag.

Their dismissals in the first innings were very poor, second innings was just epic bowling. Looking forward to the decider, should be a great game

Posted by   on (February 24, 2014, 9:29 GMT)

As a South African I have to say its a much better feeling waking up this morning than it was last Saturday. However, the Steve Smith not out overturn with so little evidence, and the Ryan Harris and Nathan Lyon dismissals in the frenetic last hour along with the Peter Siddle and Nathan Lyon non dismissals due to not reviewing are not sitting well with me. If the DRS system is going to work properly we have to get rid of the Review Lottery. Yes, it did feel like the system was failing SA for a while and then benefited them in the end. But the argument that it all evens out in the end is not good enough. Considering what his wicket was worth Lyon should have been able to review regardless of reviews left. And if Harris had been given not out and SA couldn't review, what then? Its such a lottery based on which way the umpires go and whether teams have reviews in the bag. Its taking some of the gloss off the win for me.

Posted by JimmySA on (February 24, 2014, 9:28 GMT)

@PrasPunter I believe Jhonny doesn't focus on reverse because he isn't consistent enough. He relies on pure pace and aiming for the batsman's head instead of focusing on hitting the wickets over. It has worked for him for quite a while now though. Just my opinion anyway.

Posted by   on (February 24, 2014, 9:24 GMT)

Is it raining there??

Posted by Shaggy076 on (February 24, 2014, 9:17 GMT)

Cpt.Meanstar; Once again thanks for the great laugh, your posts always have great laugh value. I do believe after the first test your post was the complete opposite of your post for the second test. No one takes your posts seriously and I think we all agree, your posts are always great for a laugh.

Posted by   on (February 24, 2014, 9:15 GMT)

How cruel this world is.....few days back everybody was parsing the most intimidating predator of world cricket mitchell johnson...out of no where Styne came and took all the lime light........Moral of the story is no matter how strong you are never underestimate your opponent...

Posted by SHK1 on (February 24, 2014, 9:14 GMT)

Can anyone answer this for me? Smith managed to claim an extra half hour yesterday. Why didn't he do that in the test against India? Is the option only available to the fielding side?

Posted by   on (February 24, 2014, 8:52 GMT)

To all my fellow compatriots who are gleefully piping up after this defeat I'd suggest you simmer down. We have a ways to go before we can match the level of performance on display in this series so far. Steyn's spell with the old ball was just a force of nature. He has had this habit recently of not-necessarily picking up 5-fers but still getting important wickets in a bunch like at Durban against us. I don't think Australia can beat SA at Newlands which is a happy hunting ground for them and where the crowd will be out in strong numbers.

Posted by disco_bob on (February 24, 2014, 8:46 GMT)

@Albie Hanekom, Greatest Game, Hi guys, hey SA played better this match, I do and have acknowledged that already, churlish of you to pull out quotes. I don't have any stuff of yours stashed away, so maybe you could remind me of what your thoughts were before the Centurion match, I'll wager that there was no talk about being obliterated with one person in hospital, I think that's a bit more than 'starting slowly'. See you at Cape Town. Any predictions? btw GG, I never it was a doctored pitch, in fact I am on record as saying that it's a good test playing on all pitches.

Posted by coarsecricketer on (February 24, 2014, 8:25 GMT)

Lessons of the PE Test: BATTING: The Proteas showed patience, the Aussies didn't. The Proteas batted patiently and deliberately. Once batsmen had played themselves in, they gradually accelerated and began to dominate the bowling, resulting in excellent totals on this particular pitch. The Aussie batting: Well, looks as if the Aussies think they are still the great team of 10 years ago, and can take the game away from the opposition every time they go out to bat. Why else would they play in both innings as if they were in a T20 game, going at 4 runs an over, but losing wickets regularly? BOWLING: The Proteas showed great bowling skills. Morkel used pace and bounce to great effect, while Steyn began to show what he could do with reverse swing. In the second innings, Steyn's reverse swing was simply devastating (especially 'replay' dismissal of Haddin). Apart from Lyon, none of the Aussie bowlers was able to get anything out of a surface that was clearly uncomfortable for them.

Posted by CustomKid on (February 24, 2014, 8:13 GMT)

Is it raining in PE today by any chance ?

Posted by ModernUmpiresPlz on (February 24, 2014, 7:59 GMT)

@Dustin Calitz I actually don't personally know anyone who cares that Broad didn't walk. I think the reason some people got so emotional over it was because of how the match was poised and the effect it had on the series... and maybe a little extra because he hit the cover off it but we had no reviews left. I don't care though, it definitely helped us learn to use the review system properly instead of trying to abuse it.

I do enjoy the SA gloating going on in here now. It's still a better performance than we put on in India or England and at 1-1 there's only room for you to look silly. Before the start of this series you would have thought a 2-1 series win to SA would be a fairly reasonable assessment and certainly wouldn't hurt Australia given our current standing in world cricket, but hey, each to his own. Looking forward to Newlands.

Posted by   on (February 24, 2014, 7:41 GMT)

South Africa has now exposed the weakness in the Aussie batting lineup that the English could,nt - the Aussies were around 100 for 5 on numerous occassions during the ashes series but the poms allowed them to escape every time - remember,before the ashes,the Aussies lost 8 test matches in a row and were made to look like worldbeaters by the poms . In the first test ,South Africa were surely undercooked and it showed - it looked as if we were bowling on a different pitch than the Aussies in PE and so much for the Aussies having the best bowling attack in the world !!!Even without Kallis,SA are still a classy outfit and there is good reason why they have been no 1 in the world for the past 2 years and i foresee this to continue for some time.

Posted by here2rock on (February 24, 2014, 7:28 GMT)

Craig McDermott said before the series that Australia had the number #1 bowling attack in the world, I wonder what he thinks now? I have no doubt that it would have have given some motivation to guys like Dale Steyn who has been at the top of the fast bowling tree for a long time. Never wake up a sleeping giant!

Posted by   on (February 24, 2014, 7:26 GMT)

The Australia team have renamed themselves the Stuart Broad XI...so quick to cry foul, but how many of their batsmen walked?

Personally I don't have much issue with standing your ground. It goes hand in hand with batmen getting feint edges and being given out LBW. But after this last test...the hypocrisy is laughable...

WELL DONE SA...#1 Test team for a reason

Posted by   on (February 24, 2014, 7:26 GMT)

Congrats to my SA team on a fantastic fightback! However, we must not get complacent. This Aussie team will fight back here in Cape Town, and we must be ready for that.

Cannot wait for this weekend. Checked last night to make sure that my tickets are in a very safe place!

Posted by akashhaque on (February 24, 2014, 7:25 GMT)

I dont understand why such two teams are playing for 3 tests only? The Ashes is the only 5match series, its not good. I think Australia-SA test series should be also 5 match series, ICC, please look at the game part instead of commercial part.

Posted by DylanBrah on (February 24, 2014, 7:14 GMT)

People here couldn't wait for Watson to be dropped, now they can't wait until he is back in the team.

Posted by   on (February 24, 2014, 7:09 GMT)

mitch is far too eratic to have the correct seam position for it to swing... this is the sort of contest we were all hoping for... bring on The Final Teat

Posted by soviet-cricket on (February 24, 2014, 7:03 GMT)

@Rajesh. "Kumar Both teams have their limitations, and really are not great teams like WI under Clive Lloyd. . You take bounce out of the equation, and entire Aussie attack becomes harmless and toothless. And their batters can't play on a slow-low pitch, particularly when the ball is spinning or reversing. While, if you take swing out of the equation, then Saffer attack becomes very ordinary, and if the bounce is there in the pitch, then they become bunnies of someone like MJ. I would say that the level of cricket is very mediocre these days, and in these days of mediocrity, these teams are somewhere in the top. Says a lot of about the level of cricket these days, doesn't it"? Australia- you take bounce of the equation and the entire aussie attack becomes harmless & toothless South Africa- you take swing out and south African attack becomes ordinary @rajesh. your full of contradictions my friend, both playing in the same ground or different ground

Posted by jmcilhinney on (February 24, 2014, 6:45 GMT)

@ShutTheGate on (February 24, 2014, 2:18 GMT), in order for a ball to swing it must act like an aerofoil, i.e. air passes with higher velocity over one side and that creates lower pressure, thus the ball is literally pushed by the air in that direction. It's exactly the same principle as a wing on an aeroplane but obviously a cricket ball is the same shape on each side so it takes some "magic" to make it happen. The ball must be in the right condition with the necessary contrast between the two sides. Seam position is also critical and that's where the bowlers' skills come in. If you can consistently put the seam in the correct position and have it stay there as the ball travels towards the batsman then you can get the ball to swing. Generally speaking, the faster you bowl, the harder it is to maintain seam position so swing at pace is impressive and obviously that much harder to play.

Posted by PrasPunter on (February 24, 2014, 6:44 GMT)

@Gzero , Steyn, for sure !! But if Mitch starts to reverse it , he will be as lethal as Steyn in all conditions. Wondering why he doesn't try to do it nowadays. Steyn was all class last evening !!

Posted by   on (February 24, 2014, 6:44 GMT)

one spell of lethal pace bowling changed the complexion of the game and the proteas won the fragile aussie batting was exposed now it will need a same type of approach for the proteas to win the series

Posted by ZCFOutkast on (February 24, 2014, 6:37 GMT)

I hope Duminy shares his MoM award with Dharmasena, Illingworth and the lightmeter manufacturer.

I don't understand how one can say it's Johnson 1 Steyn 1. Johnson is still miles head!

Posted by HennopsRiverEnd on (February 24, 2014, 6:12 GMT)

@joeythekangaroo2

It's not just about the four wickets, it's about a match winning spell. What a bowler!

Posted by LoungeChairCritic on (February 24, 2014, 6:12 GMT)

Hopefully more people will attend the 3rd test. It was disappointing to see the PE crowd. My gut feeling is that it would of been difficult for administrators to build a culture of test cricket, when it wasn't played in the country for about 23 years (1970 - 1993). Watching these teams go head to head is about as good as it gets. I am sure the Capetonian's will lead the way. As underdogs, the oz team have nothing to lose. The Saffers have their strengths & weaknesses just like we do.

Posted by   on (February 24, 2014, 5:54 GMT)

@ForeverProteas49

Yeah? Careful what you wish for. A pitch where you can bowl this aussie team for 49 can also bowl SA for even less.

Yes you might said that "you cant even get us out in the 2nd test while our bowlers annihilated you" but likewise, that was exactly the same thing in reverse on the 1st test isn't it?

Posted by ShahidAzizMughal on (February 24, 2014, 5:45 GMT)

South africa shows that they are the best and i think SA will win the 3rd match as well but philandar needs to do a better job as he has skills to destroy any batting line up. SA we are supporting you as Pakistani

Posted by TommytuckerSaffa on (February 24, 2014, 5:44 GMT)

What an amazing spectacle of fast bowling (not the spectacles Marsh got in the match). Dale Steyn take a bow. To behold such pace and swing is a rarity in these times and what makes him a true great. Australia's soft underbelly was always there but now exposed. Yesterday was for all to see who the true No.1 bowling attack is. Welcome back SA.

On to Newlands now where found memories await us. 47 all out - who could ever forget. With Dale plus Vernon steaming in and Hash in form. I just cant wait.

Posted by heathrf1974 on (February 24, 2014, 5:42 GMT)

Great play by SA. The SA bowlers and batsman put in a fine team performance. Those first innings runs make a big difference in matches. Aussie bowlers need to learn how to get the ball to reverse, Lyon needs to start taking more wickets in the 2nd innings and Ryan Harris has been disappointing this series (I hope his best is not past him, however, he's no spring chicken). Should be interesting to see who wins the toss in Cape Town. SA are favourites to win this series 2-1 (as expected by many at the start of the series), but you never know.

Posted by   on (February 24, 2014, 5:35 GMT)

Well done S.A world #1 and aus are good but a reality check we needed to lose this to become better not draw it. Khawaja should have been stuck with was saying this during ashes wins. Guys with technique to score centuries off 230 balls as rogers won't be around forever. Extra half hour only 7 wickets down oz of 01 never got that, they asked a lot tho. Disappointment none the less 10/90 hurts now I know how it feels to be English Perhaps the result may hav been different had we batted first I hope not but the turn of part timers gives 1 to think. Clarke due to win the toss

Posted by Mervo on (February 24, 2014, 5:34 GMT)

Next test should be great. Both have hammered each other. Not much in it at all. Steyn was great and Johnson was good, the reverse in Centurion.

Posted by   on (February 24, 2014, 5:30 GMT)

Good to see some sensible and sporting comments from Aussie fans coming through. Warning to some of my fellow SA fans who are getting a bit too gung-ho - the series is not over. Is it not true that if Australia win in CT, they will be the number one test team in the world?. It is the best opportunity SA have had in a while to bury the choker tag once and for all. Commiserations to the Aussies. I am sure they will come back strong in CT. My experience is that most Saffas never underestimate them. I hope the final test turns out to be all it promises to be.

Posted by BDHUNTER on (February 24, 2014, 5:26 GMT)

G8t performance by SA and Styen.....how ever i mentioned earlier he should know how to bowl yorker also....

Posted by No.444 on (February 24, 2014, 5:25 GMT)

@Gokul Kenath: reverse swing is so much harder to play because 1) the seam position is the same as normal swing so you have to wait to see which way it goes, 2)it happens slightly later than conventional swing, 3)you need to bowl quite fast to get reverse so you have min time. There is great article somewhere on cricinfo about how it works.

Posted by Chavala1206 on (February 24, 2014, 5:24 GMT)

the captaincy of smith absolutely gem what a thinking of giving bowl to part timers and he uses all the resources and no one can give a ball to part timer when 0-126 thats absolutely sensational thinking and cameback miserely. thats why i like smith whether he win r loss the matches his decisions are accurate more than other captains his selection of team is brilliant he is not only a captain he is a team maker and spiritual person to sa. only fate playing with him at high level.

Posted by   on (February 24, 2014, 5:12 GMT)

GRVJPR So you say nothing great about that Viet Johnson taking wickets in Aus. pitches isn't it. His bowling is all crap and let him take wickets w/o use of short pitched balls and then you talk. Ian Chappel does not consider him with the likes of jeff thommo. I have seen Aussies never appreciate anyone but themselves. Come out you Aussies from your small Continent there is a big wide world outside.Similarly Aussie Commentators never appreciate the other Country's batsmen or bowlers but their own. See the difference the Zimbabwean gentlemen was right on the spot. Learn from him the art of sportsmanship.,

Posted by Test_nut on (February 24, 2014, 5:03 GMT)

@John Mckenzie: A draw would be a fair result? Are you sure? Were we watching the same test? That would be like us saying that a draw would have been a fair result in Centurion. We were comprehensively outplayed in Centurion, just like the Aussies were comprehensively outplayed in PE. Yes, the umpiring was amongst the poorest I have seen in a while. A number of decisions may have been marginal, but gee they got a lot wrong. About the only thing that comes close to as shocking (aside from the monumental collapse yesterday) has been some of our fielding and DRS usage during the test. Was Australia a bit unlucky with some of the umpiring calls? Sure. Was a draw a fair result? Please. Bring on Cape Town, hopefully a fitting end to a cracking series played in a really good, hard, competitive spirit. Just what good test cricket should be about. Pity about some of the delusional fans…:)

Posted by Chavala1206 on (February 24, 2014, 5:01 GMT)

thats why CAPTAIN smith is successfull captain in test and he is not bothering about his loss and win ratio. thats the difference between smith and others. other captain thinks about their win loss ratio but smith thinks possibilities of team capability. if they fail next time they try better and makes some responsibility on every bowler. dhoni he doesnt give resp to the bowlers to prove he afraids about win loss ratio and he doesnt dare to declare just above 400 runs of more than a day.

Posted by C.A-SA1987 on (February 24, 2014, 5:00 GMT)

@Shaggy076 on (February 23, 2014, 22:41 GMT)

As a South African fan, I agree with you 100% - The series is level. Both sides have highlighted their grit and ability. Newlands should be a cracker! Harris and Siddle are top class no doubt, and i expect them to come back firing. Johnson has had an ok game actually, by normal human standards - he still got a few wickets. He just didn't take another 12 wickets, so trolls start questioning him for no good reason. Clarke is due a big one, and that concerns me - he scored 140 odd in the last match at newlands.

One way or the other... I'll be at Newlands for the first two days:-)

Posted by RDLikesCricket on (February 24, 2014, 4:59 GMT)

Finally someone got the better of Australia. Good show by SA in the second test. Showed lot of purpose. Im sure the 3rd test will be a cracker of a contest. How I wish Aus-SA Test series has 5 tests... Wonderful entertainment. Thanks to both the teams. Rogers made a good 100 yesterday and Amla bounced back from an minor slump to make a hundred... Good team men these 2.

Posted by Gzero on (February 24, 2014, 4:48 GMT)

This match should shut off the discussion about who's number 1 bowler, Mitch or Steyn?. Dale Steyn doesn't need fast pitches to get wickets. He has the ability to bowl superbly anywhere in the world. He is much superior than Mitchell Johnson. The Best of Recent Cricket Era.

Posted by HatsforBats on (February 24, 2014, 4:48 GMT)

Well, I went to bed at tea thinking we might just be able to hold on and make a fight of it. Ah...that must have been quite some bowling from SA. Once again though, another sickening collapse from Aus. I really have no idea why this problem continues to plague us, beyond the continuing team selections.

Very glad the weather didn't interfere. We (Aus) have had some poor weather go against us, but the last thing we want is to do see winning performances robbed by weather.

@Greatest_Game; And how could we forget 9-47 in 11 overs?

Posted by   on (February 24, 2014, 4:41 GMT)

Amir Sajjad, Same Pakistan that lost a Test even to Zimbabwe, same Pakistan that couldnt win any Test Series form last 5 Test tours even by from minnows like Zimbabwe, West Indies and even Sri Lanka. Same Pakistan that couldnt win or draw a single Test Match from their last tours of Australia & South Africa. But at least India white washed Aus 4-0 on thier home soil so be fair in your analysis, in today's times every team is invincible at home and goats abroad

Posted by Rajesh.Kumar on (February 24, 2014, 4:39 GMT)

Both teams have their limitations, and really are not great teams like WI under Clive Lloyd. . You take bounce out of the equation, and entire Aussie attack becomes harmless and toothless. And their batters can't play on a slow-low pitch, particularly when the ball is spinning or reversing. While, if you take swing out of the equation, then Saffer attack becomes very ordinary, and if the bounce is there in the pitch, then they become bunnies of someone like MJ. I would say that the level of cricket is very mediocre these days, and in these days of mediocrity, these teams are somewhere in the top. Says a lot of about the level of cricket these days, doesn't it?

Posted by   on (February 24, 2014, 4:35 GMT)

Cummins , watto hv 2 be brought back , over dependence on MJ is hurting aus badly , cummins is even more deadly than MJ ..rest marsh is juz a overhyped player ..rogers warner watson clarke smith bailey haddin MJ cummins harris lyon ..

Posted by -tanZeeEeel- on (February 24, 2014, 4:34 GMT)

same resulT .... has were against Pakistan. Such teams require; atleast 3 tests series ... bcoZ with only 2 tests; it iz hard to decide who iz Superior or Inferior ... among these BiG 3 teams.

Posted by Amol_Ind_SA on (February 24, 2014, 4:32 GMT)

Pakistan's style of ambushing teams of better skills on Abu-Dhabi flats is similar to Sri-Lanka's style of making hay against great teams ONLY IN Sri-Lanka.

Posted by Amol_Ind_SA on (February 24, 2014, 4:29 GMT)

Technically it's not 10 wickets for 90. It's 9 wickets for 90. Considering it 10 would be like totally disregarding the 126 runs they scored before the fall of the first wicket. That match in which AUS were flattened for 47- all out...That was 10 wickets for 47, but this was 9 wickets for 90.

Posted by smalishah84 on (February 24, 2014, 4:26 GMT)

What a test match. Well played SA. Looking forward to the final test of the series.

Posted by   on (February 24, 2014, 4:22 GMT)

Haha South Africa giving them what Pakistan got

Posted by   on (February 24, 2014, 4:16 GMT)

Before this match even started I made some predictions which are all there in the comments I made on various reports. Prior to this match I said that Aussies have become too cocky and the match will be won by SA. Also on first day report I wrote that Aussies would get bundled out for less than 200 in first innings (they got few runs more than 200). And I say now the 3rd test will be a ding dong battle but still SA will win that too.

Posted by   on (February 24, 2014, 4:10 GMT)

Fascinating series, its like "Johnson vs. Steyn" series. One knock out punch followed by another with one to go!!! Imagine Sachin and Brian in their prime wining one test each when WI played India, how exciting would that be!!!

Posted by Zaheerahmed on (February 24, 2014, 4:06 GMT)

Why Pfaff Du Plessis and reverse swing go together for Proteas? Were there any zippers in the pocket of South Africans yesterday? Aussie collapse reminded me of Pakistan 1st innings in Dubai agaisnt SA last year.

Posted by AussieNSW on (February 24, 2014, 4:02 GMT)

A poor performance from (insert team name here). If it wasn't for (insert players name here) they would have nothing. Looking forward to the next test at (insert venue here) where we're sure to doctor the pitch to suit ourselves again. I hope we don't get (insert umpires name here) again as his decisions have been below par. It just goes to show what a champion side SOUTH AFRICA is and (insert team name here) are losers...........Yadda yadda yadda....we are number 1 in the world etc etc etc. greatest this. greatest that This old script sure didn't get a run last week but we've sure seen plenty of it. You'd think the saffers had wrapped up the series already. Next we'll be comparing Steyn and Morkel to the true greats and hall of famers such as McGrath and Warne 1-1 and still one to play gentlemen.......

Posted by black_bird on (February 24, 2014, 3:53 GMT)

Its a shame that, aus could not reach the easy total. Just image if india get such a decent chance. they would make the total easily within 70 overs.South africa is lucky to win this match.

Posted by cricketsubh on (February 24, 2014, 3:29 GMT)

i do not think aus team can win any test if they loss the toss if they win the toss in cap town i think they have the chane but if they loss the toss i do not think they can win the match becoz they are very poor chasing side and they canot save the match under pressure.i think lyon should be dropped from the next test in this condition i do not think he can make a difference i pick 4 fast bowlers for captain and watson and hughes for marsh and doolan i think marsh is out of from he showed in the 2nd test u canot plat a out of from player in the decider in cap town.

Posted by Maroubra_Flyer on (February 24, 2014, 3:25 GMT)

Well done SA a great win. Aus should not have had Doolan & Marsh at 3 & 4. England's problem in Aus was inexperience at the top same for us, this cost us momentum & looked what happened, SA swarmed all over us. Capetown will be interesting. I expect Harris & Philander to have great tests. Clarke will bounce back, he carried us for a long time & has lost his mental edge, this should see it return as well as Graeme Smith's (form is temporary, Class is permanent - ask Steyn). Congratulations again SA & looking forward to next week!!!!! P.S We really need a 6 Test series to decide this once & for all (3 games SA & 3 in Aus)

Posted by   on (February 24, 2014, 3:25 GMT)

@amir sajad: pakistan has beaten england at home not in england, that thing well india have done more than pakistan. what pakistani have done when they went to england everyone knows specially ur ex captian. and talking about winning outside ur country tell me when was the last time pakistan have won a single test match in sa, aus, eng????????? may be never hehe... may be that would be the wilddream for who pakistan..

Posted by Rajesh.Kumar on (February 24, 2014, 3:05 GMT)

Actually both the teams are very ordinary, and need special types of pitches to succeed against opponents. While Saffers served bouncy pitches to India, but after the first test against Aussies they realized that if they take bounce out of the equation, then MJ and other Aussie bowlers are very ordinary. So Saffer formula of win against Aussies is a slow pitch, but against Indians is a fast pitch. Similarly, Aussie batters don't know how to bat if there is any reverse swing or if the pitch is slow and low. That just about explains their recent results against India in India. And Saffers have tried to create India like pitches in their country against the Aussies. But this is a one-time show only. Anytime a team from subcontinent visits, the same pitches will turn bouncy.

Posted by   on (February 24, 2014, 2:59 GMT)

@Amir

I think you have not read the comments well and was in hurry to post your thoughts.

Or am I missing something?

Posted by Humdingers on (February 24, 2014, 2:43 GMT)

7,000 "fans" at the game to watch a brilliant test match! What a shame. Amazing comeback - especially after the blazing start of the 4th innings. Goes to show what a strike bowler can do to a team. Batsmen may set games up (or save them) but defn bolwers are the ones that win matches. Not many going around - Johnson on conducive pitches, Anderson to an extent - again in conditions that suit but man Styen is clearly ahead of the pack. Swing with Pace - take that over Bounce anyday.

Posted by whofriggincares on (February 24, 2014, 2:36 GMT)

Credit where credit is due, the Saffers bounced back like a champion team tends to do. You can say what you like about either of these teams but if you go back and read comments after the first test I think you will find it was only the blindest of one eye supporters that were attempting to take the number 1 mantle and bestow it on the aussies. Truth is they are a good side now and capable of beating anyone on their day, other countries supporters loved kicking us while we were down but those days are gone for now. There is always going to be jealousy when you have had a 15 year period as the best in the world that's just human nature. And this blog has had a rare moment of clarity from @tommytuckersaffer, who normally just speaks a lot of rubbish. The one area where Australia is really lacking is not being able to produce reverse swing. So when our opponents start preparing dry, dead lifeless pitches to nullify our superior pace attack we struggle to produce movement.

Posted by PENlS on (February 24, 2014, 2:32 GMT)

Let's put all this 'who's the no.1 bowling attack in the world' hysteria into perspective

First test: Australia pulverised SAF. An inferior Australian batting lineup piled on the runs against a strong pace attack on a tough deck and then blew away the SAFFA's batting lineup twice.

Second Test: SAF pulverised Australia. On a flat deck the SAFFA's pace attack rose to the occasion and gave it back to the Aussies.

Both attacks have pretty much shared the spoils.

Bring on Newlands.

Posted by barryrichardsfan on (February 24, 2014, 2:26 GMT)

Even during the 5-0 whitewash at home, aussie batters got themselves in trouble quite often with Haddin bailing them out most of the times. So against such high quality attack this show was on the cards.

Posted by legfinedeep on (February 24, 2014, 2:26 GMT)

Watching Dale Willem Steyn bowling - it's just a thing of beauty. A class apart. Probably the only bowler in the world who can bowl in ANY conditions. Credit to Morne and Vern as well, but Steyn is certainly the best of his generation (and one of the best of all time), as he keeps proving over and over again for years. Respect for Mitch as well - I expect him to come back hard and strong, a great competitor, and much like was the case with Hash, you can't keep a competitor like Clarke down for much longer either - he is due a big innings. Well done, SA - it took one match to get used to life without the colossus that is Kallis (I could imagine him striding out in the first test completely unperturbed by all the hoopla around MJ)...but seems like there is balance in this new side without him. I just hope the selectors stick with Elgar, and play Abbott and NOT Kleinveldt, please god not Kleinveldt.

Posted by ShutTheGate on (February 24, 2014, 2:18 GMT)

I just watched the reply of Steyn's wickets and wow, he seemed unplayable.

Can anyone explain the science behind reverse swing and why it only happens sometimes and why only some bowlers can bowl it?

Luckily it doesn't happen too often other wise we'd have quiet a few 3 day test matches. Absolutely amazing to watch though.

What's made this series interesting is that the Aussies have found and exploited a South African weakness on a fast bouncy wicket, South Africa has found and exploited an Australian weakness on a slow reverse swinging wicket.

So if Cape Town is somewhere in between, we have a series contest to look forward to.

Posted by   on (February 24, 2014, 2:17 GMT)

Good to see SA fans are back chirping. I thought you guys were missing somewhere after the first test.

1 - 1 now, should be cracker of a 3rd test

Posted by   on (February 24, 2014, 2:07 GMT)

Australia need to do something about an issue. Other teams have found a template to beat them; it is the template of slow and low dry pitches that assist spin and reverse swing.

Australian bowling becomes less effective in such conditions and their batsmen are not comfortable with it.

With such pitches, India beat them 4-0 at home, England won their home series against them 3-0 and now with the same kind of a pitch, South Africa have won a test.

Australian fast bowlers were/are not great at reversing. They need to work on this hard as the Australian pitches and the lush green outfields there hardly encourages reverse swing.

Time to think and plan for it, Pup and Boof.

Posted by Thegimp on (February 24, 2014, 1:45 GMT)

When the last 9 batsmen outscore extras by 1 run you know you are in trouble. What australia needed was 231 extras!!!

Johnson 1 V Steyn 1 .......one test to go.

Clearly Australia need to work out this reverse swing thing, both batsmen and bowlers. Eng and SA have been all over us once it starts reversing which they manage to do by the 30th over. Just as they have negotiated the new ball they have two overs of respite and then it started reversing wildly.

What I can't work out is why is it so difficult to face? Batsmen, when presented with a decent inswing bowler manage, but as soon as an out swing bowler starts reversing it is near on unplayable. Decent inswing bowlers bowl straight balls too so I can't believe it's the variety.

It appears that Aust are the kings when the wickets are quick but peasants when they come low and slow.

Posted by   on (February 24, 2014, 1:34 GMT)

Modern cricket. Win at home... Lose away. Picking a batch of balls to suit your bowlers and then doctoring the pitches to your strength. Good on SA for being the one team to buck this trend and win away quite often. Pity no one in SA seems to watch cricket. I've seen more people in a bus queue than at this excellent days cricket.

Posted by joeythekangaroo2 on (February 24, 2014, 1:30 GMT)

Gee Steyn gets a lot of attention and praise for taking four wickets?

Posted by   on (February 24, 2014, 1:23 GMT)

Shaun Marsh invokes same levels of frustration that Rohit Sharma does !! May be a good idea to let them bat with each other to figure out a way to score consistently

Posted by   on (February 24, 2014, 1:19 GMT)

Australia have never been good at facing swing bowling, historically. Simon Jones, Matthew Hoggard, John Bracewell and Zaheer Khan all these bowlers rattled Aussie batting line up.

Posted by   on (February 24, 2014, 1:18 GMT)

@Shutthegate - Actually a lot of their fans (and this neutral kiwi one.... look forward to giving it to you in the world cup fyi) were in here during the first innings of this test. You know, when the Aussies were commenting beneath the other articles? You recall? Saying, SA were going too slow and were about to be thrashed. You know? When literally HALF or more of the printed AUS fans' comments declared it a draw and belittled Smith's captaincy? Because it was the same day, as was the day after (when the Aussies repeated the same views), that I and other neutrals and SA fans TRIED to explain to you how TEST cricket works. How you bat once well, get a lead and declare and then bowl the other team out. Denial, more denial and delusions of grandeur riddled every comment EVEN when 448 was set you thought you would win!! I and others said all along the opposite. You were thrashed... and I mean THRASHED - by 200+ runs with over a full day / 90 overs to spare. Better luck next time.

Posted by Int.Curator on (February 24, 2014, 1:08 GMT)

Well played SA.

Excellent declaration.

Australia love to play entertaining cricket to gain a win even at the cost of a draw.

SA dangled a juicy carrot,

Hope 3rd test is played in order and such spirit to gain a win.

Com'on Aussies.

Posted by   on (February 24, 2014, 1:06 GMT)

champion team, champion players - SA showing great character

Posted by Chris_Howard on (February 24, 2014, 1:03 GMT)

Good to see Warner's claim the Aussie bats had Philander worked out was right... except VP took 5 for the match, like Steyn.

Davey is a walking headline that needs to keep his mouth shut.

Posted by GRVJPR on (February 24, 2014, 0:52 GMT)

Its a test match won in home conditions. I don't know why people go ga ga over home wins. Most teams win matches at home. And about dale steyn wickets, it's like Aswin picking up wickets at home. Nothing Special!

Posted by Dravid_Pujara_Gravitas_Atheist on (February 24, 2014, 0:41 GMT)

Congratulations to South Africa for winning the second test.

Posted by ToneMalone on (February 24, 2014, 0:25 GMT)

Went to bed in Sydney with Australia about 0/100 and woke up to the news of yet another batting collapse. My first reaction was to shake my head at our country's batting frailties ... but after watching the highlights, I think it's fairer to praise the brilliance of Steyn & Co. You know it's trouble when you've got new batsmen at the crease, facing quality reverse swing before they can get their feet moving, and some of those searing deliveries would've done for any batsman in the world. Marsh, Smith & Haddin got absolute rippers - reminded me of the days of Akram & Waqar!

The selectors can't fix Australia's batting overnight. But what worries me more is how the selectors have been skimping on bowling resources for many Tests, which has now come home to roost. Get Harris to the knee surgeon, put in Pattinson for the 3rd Test, and (in Faulkner's absence) pick Henriques as the allrounder. Watson would be my pick *if* he could reliably bowl 15-20 overs - sadly, that just isn't the case.

Posted by BrisVegan on (February 24, 2014, 0:21 GMT)

As an Aussie fan, and not the one-eyed variety, I can safely say we were outplayed. I did expect SAf to put up a better showing, and Aus were definitely due for a batting collapse and also, how long could Mitch keep on as the one-man wrecking ball?

Funny how a combination of things come together in this funny old game and make one side seem clueless and inept (think back one test match only).

Saf #1 side for a reason. Aussie batting won't be fixed overnight - but when it does happen (and it will), watch out world.

Posted by   on (February 24, 2014, 0:11 GMT)

Michael Clarke:

This is a dramatic turn around of for tunes! The Aussie melt-down is a stunning one! Michael Clarke has not played a significant captain's innings lately.

In fact, the last time he made any meaningful runs was in early December in the Adelaide Test when he scored 148. Since then he has failed prodigiously and one must ask: how long can this run of futility continue before someone tells him, enough?

The rubber match will be particularly interesting to watch, particularly for the man at the helm. Clarke needs to step up to the plate and score some runs or seriously consider stepping down, in my view!

Posted by ModernUmpiresPlz on (February 23, 2014, 23:59 GMT)

Congratulations SA, 1-1 going into the third test is far more interesting than any other possible scoreline isn't it? After seeing the reverse swing in the first innings I knew the writing was on the wall for Australia in this test, although I did enjoy a few antsy South Africans worrying they might lose when Australia were 125/0. Australia were never chasing down 400+ runs in this test match.

@mikkkk No delusions of grandeur here, especially if the ball is reverse swinging. Australia and reverse swing don't mix well, I can't remember us ever looking half decent against a reverse swinging ball. I was hoping for a wake up call for the Australian batting lineup and we finally got it, it's better for us this way in the long term.

@Jimmyvida Wouldn't it be more crushing for SA to prepare a fast, bouncy wicket and show that they can beat Johnson even on his type of wicket? They do have one hell of a batting lineup.

@Sathesh_Krishnan Why does everyone forget SA scored 96 in that test?

Posted by   on (February 23, 2014, 23:55 GMT)

Lol there's actually only 4 SA commenters here, there seems to have been more after the first match

Posted by LoungeChairCritic on (February 23, 2014, 23:52 GMT)

The great thing about cricket, is that it can change so quickly. As an ozzi supporter I just wanted my team to bat time. I was looking at balls faced and not runs. I was well aware of the 5th day forecast. Watching last night felt like watching the Durham test match in the Ashes where Warner and Rogers got us off to a strong start before a massive collapse in the 4th innings. Although both sides have their weaknesses, South Africa will go into the game deserved favourites in Capetown. Australia needs a fit Watson back. He makes our team a bit more balanced.

Posted by Dave1970 on (February 23, 2014, 23:49 GMT)

This test was exactly what is expected from SA, the number 1 test team. They have regularly been slow starters in a test series and where caught on the hop by a confident Australia team who had won 5 on the trot.That combination alone signaled a loss that the Australians should walk away learning a great deal.Such as, Shaun Marsh is another Marcus North, easy on the eye, brilliant one day, a cast of Lost the next. This is a repeat in what happened in Marsh's last appearance - consistency is not his strong suit. Clarke is out of form.

Doolan needs time to settle which may not happen if Watson comes back in Cape Town. Idealy Watson back in for Marsh, leave Doolan, who is a long term prospect, time to settle.

The Aussie attack lacks fire power when Johnson does not rip through an order. Harris is at the moment struggling, Lyon and Siddle are honest without that rip through an order feel.

One loss is not the end, this will test their resolve. Win the important one. Pressure supreme.

Posted by   on (February 23, 2014, 23:47 GMT)

1. Graeme Smith (Captain) 2. David Warner 3. Hashim Amla 4. Kumar Sangakkara 5. Ab De Villiers 6. Misbah Ul Haq 7. Brendom McCullum 8. Vernon Philander 9. Mitchell Johnson 10. Dale Steyn 11. Saeed Ajmal

My opinion of the best test playing 11 currently..

Ive really liked the approach that Chris Rogers has had though.. He has played very well

Posted by   on (February 23, 2014, 23:39 GMT)

Abbott and De Lange are miles ahead of Rory K. Why is RK even in the picture?

Posted by Rowayton on (February 23, 2014, 23:33 GMT)

Two little things - the Facebook person who asked whether Rogers could be out obstructing the field - I don't think so. First, he didn't actually do anything, he just stood there. No umpire would call that 'wilful obstruction by word or action'. And in any case, if obstruction had been proved it would have been Warner who was out, not Rogers. My second thing - Rogers must hold a record that will be hard to beat for being given out and then having the decision overturned on review. I reckon it has happened to him at least five times.

Posted by twomarktwo on (February 23, 2014, 23:24 GMT)

@TheBigBoodha "SA basically have 3 1/2 bowlers and the track is still slow and flat. If Australia get through the new ball then SA are in for a hard slog. Let's hope one of the remaining bowlers does not go down, as that would pretty much spell doom for them. Australia have a small chance of winning on this track. I'm surprised Smith took the risk, especially given that the batsmen didn't show any real attempt to score rapidly."

Looks a little silly in hindsight doesn't it....

Posted by letsgoproteas on (February 23, 2014, 23:17 GMT)

ShutTheGate - we've always been here - the Oz fans have just been silenced so it seems like there are more of us. haha

Posted by   on (February 23, 2014, 22:53 GMT)

Who says test cricket is not as exciting as T20 or ODIs ? This beats the heck out of anything you see in those shorter forms of the game!

Posted by   on (February 23, 2014, 22:51 GMT)

Well done South Africa!! Playing like the Windies of the '80s!! Spectacular cricket!!

Posted by   on (February 23, 2014, 22:48 GMT)

What an unbelievable victory! When left for work at 8am Australia were 130 for none. I thought any hope of SA winning this test was gone. In fact at the rate Aus was going, they may pull of another incredible heist. 3 hours later when I was able to check cricinfo again, I could not believe what I was seeing. Way to go SA!!

Posted by Shaggy076 on (February 23, 2014, 22:41 GMT)

The headline says it all series level you would think with what we are reading it is 2-0. Australia are playing the number 1 side on there home grown it was never going to be easy and no-one proclaimed it would be. So many South African supporters are angry at some barbs from troll supporters about the quality of players after one game. yet make the same stupid remarks about Australian players after one game, I find that quite ironical. Steyn,Amla, Philanderer have always been quality and only uninformed commenters have said otherwise. However, Johnson, Harris, Siddle and Clarke who are copping here are also quality performers and one test diesntt change that. The South Africans having a go at the trolls have imitated those same posters in a way. The series is 1-1 with both teams having a comprehensivr victory that still remains even in my book.

Posted by   on (February 23, 2014, 22:41 GMT)

@ShutTheGate....that was one of the most ruthless performances I have seen by a South African side for a long while. Morkel was an unsung hero, I just hope he can keep up this type of intensity! That is what we need.

As for us coming out of the woodwork, please................we are the first to admit when we play badly and lose. We are under no illusions.

Let us just look forward to the third test. It is great that cricket can be played at this level! The world is not happy that SA hold this number one spot....it is ludacris...if you got that pun then good for you all.

Posted by   on (February 23, 2014, 22:40 GMT)

to all those moaning about the crowd attendance. newlands is sold out day 1 and 2 and man do they love their cricket which will fire the sa team up even more. they love newlands.

Posted by shramiac1 on (February 23, 2014, 22:39 GMT)

The ground gave nothing to the fast bowlers for 11 sessions and suddenly the ball starts swing like a mother?? Guess those breath mints Mike Vaughan Fedexed to SA arrived just in time! LMAO Disappointing batting again from Australia and no excuse to go from 0-150 to all out!. Clarke is starting to become a worry as he is not scoring 50s, just getting the occasional 100. Marsh back to Earth in his usual fashion, though he'll probably score 100 in the next test! lol Rogers should hang his head for that suicidal runout! He'll feel even worse if the rain does come on what would have been the final day's play! Watson likely to return in Doolan's place will at least give the bowling some strength and variety.

Posted by OneEyedAussie on (February 23, 2014, 22:36 GMT)

On the one hand, I am tempted to write that SA are a very good cricket team and that Steyn is the best bowler in the world and that sometimes these things happen. But on the other hand, I can't help but feel disappointed by another incredibly limp batting performance by the Australians on a slow deck. There have been problems with this kind of surface before in recent times i.e. Durham 2013 and MCG 2013 (though we got out of jail in the Boxing Day Test because Eng were so demoralised and Rogers/Watson played beautifully). Surely going 1-0 up against the worlds best in their own den should be motivation enough to guts it out until the fifth day for a possible wash out.

Posted by   on (February 23, 2014, 22:33 GMT)

Ripping spell by Steyn...great stuff even for we Aussies to watch. As an old fast bowler I love to see spells of this quality.

All that said though the brittleness of our Aussie batting is once again exposed for all to see. Great bowling but the batting was very simply not good enough.

Posted by mahjut on (February 23, 2014, 22:28 GMT)

@shutthegate...not seen you here much (did you join during the Ashes ;) ). I do support SA, mostly because Zim get so little Int cricket, and generally prefer posting when they lose...in their defensive of course!

Haven't even read the posts below yours (yours being the first) but I imagine surlycynic was about fir the last test as well as this.

Here's one for you surlyC (and it's always a pleasure chatting) - Tsolokile for de kock next test!!?? ... "you know it makes sense!"

Posted by Greatest_Game on (February 23, 2014, 22:18 GMT)

This morning, @ disco_bob asked serious questions & made astute observations. We now have the answers.

Question: "Well well, has Smith made a blunder playing for the weather? I think so..." Answer: No.

Observation: "Warner and Rogers looking good on a good wicket." Response: Oh, not a doctored road anymore?

Observation: I doubt that we are going to lose more than an hour to rain tomorrow, maybe less. Response: Tomorrow?

Question: "How much better do the Australians feel having Doolan in next rather than Marsh." Answer: "Five runs vs zero runs" better.

Observation: "South Africa also a bowler short." Response: No problem. Australia batting!

Observation: Tomorrow is the anniversary of the last time SA secured a series victory against Australia at the Wanderers. Might be a bit fraught.

Response: Fraught for who? Forget Wanderers. (438) Next test is at Newlands. In their last innings there, Aus scored the lowest EVER aggregrate for Nos. 3-7 batsmen: 5 runs. Today, they scored 7!

Posted by TRAM on (February 23, 2014, 22:04 GMT)

Hope Indians especially Dhoni and his supporters (in the BCCI admin as well as fans) watched this match. 1. AT 126/0 MSD & co would have dropped shoulders and played for the time. But not Smith & co. 2. >>Due to the low bounce, and edges not carrying, the slips stood very close which made the catch even more impressive.<<< ABD and Smith standing behind did exactly what was required of the pitch. Compare that with MSD standing way back recently in spite of catches being dropped at the ankle height or falling short. 3. MSD's team would have neither played fast nor declared as Smith did. 4. No need to talk of the fielding, keeping and bowling standards of these 2 teams, SA & Aus with India. The only department where India is superior to the rest of teams is they have 2 really classic, technically sound batsmen (Kholi, Pujara - more may emerge), who can play all kinds of bowling. In every other department there are teams superior to India in the world including spin bowling.

Posted by Ms.Cricket on (February 23, 2014, 22:03 GMT)

Michael Clarke's place in the side as a batsman must be questioned. Clarke always questions Watson's place after one bad innings, Clrke now has had 11. Everyone should be treated equal.

Posted by Diaz54 on (February 23, 2014, 21:48 GMT)

I am Pakistani supporter. I am over the moon and very happy that SA won. I am in Manila and was up following the score on Cricinfo. Absolutely tremendous performance by SA. Steyn and Philander who have copped so much showed why SA attack is superior.

Wish this was 5 test match series...rather watch this than the mediocrity being dished out by the Ashes serious...one sided totally hyped by the big 2 and the big 1 is no better get white washed when ever they play away. Thank you SA for brilliant cricket. Will try getting to Cape Town!! Don't ease of now thrash the big mouths....please.

Posted by   on (February 23, 2014, 21:48 GMT)

Well I still can't believe that happened, 0-126 to all out for 216 ! That bowling by Steyn was just simply amazing . I still think Australia was very unlucky there was some very close calls which went against them esepcially Lyon's dismissal which he clearly edged. A draw would have been a fair result. Anyway this 3rd test will be fantastic I just hope the weather stays good for all 5 days , I still believe the Aussie boys will pull it off and claim a famous 2-1 series lead.

Posted by WeirPicki on (February 23, 2014, 21:47 GMT)

Clarke looks scared in this series. Great to see big mouth Johnson hit a few times too, he can dish it out but doesn't like it when it's his time to face the music. All credit to SA on a great win.

Posted by   on (February 23, 2014, 21:37 GMT)

Makes you wonder if the First Test result might have been different if SA had played another series similar to the warmup Oz had against the POM's. They were Test cricket rusty

Posted by geoffw on (February 23, 2014, 21:36 GMT)

I thought that the SA bowlers got heaps of movement through the air, and then a bit off the pitch. Pretty good to watch - the Aus top order really had no idea. Hads's dismissal was a worry - how big was the gap between bat and pad. And I have to say it - Rogers' run out has to be the dumbest I have seen for ages - what was he thinking ? "I have to get Sids on strike" "I have to get up the other end to get the No. 10 into the firing line ?" What ? Well played Saffas, until Lehmann decides to move Clarke up the order, and bring Watto in at 6, I think the Aussies will continue to be delusional about their batting. Clarke at 3 will test him - its about time.

Posted by zzby on (February 23, 2014, 21:35 GMT)

Marsh is the best player in the world , keep him in the team and definitely the other team will win.

Posted by Fijicricket on (February 23, 2014, 21:34 GMT)

Albert Campbell seems to follow India and any game in any format or age group , that's why no comment here! During the India tour! he was here very hour claiming to be SA man! Now he is P eter Jones following India in the u 19! Amazing the lengths P akistan followers will go to

Posted by basusri133b on (February 23, 2014, 21:14 GMT)

South Africa is definitely the number 1 Test side in the world. Their ability to fight back sets them apart from the others. They definitely have the best pace attack in the world.

Posted by AlSmug on (February 23, 2014, 21:12 GMT)

Australia on the whle played with no ticker what so ever, clarkes batting is key and he is still not showing enough respect to the opposition bowling the same could be said for a few other, they need to tighten their fragile little minds if they are to win the series. I read a lot of Australia are only good on juicy track well, juicy wickets is a man's game, if south africa are slow track bullies well the kings of softness

Posted by   on (February 23, 2014, 21:00 GMT)

@amir sajjad might want to read emanuals post properly brother.

Posted by   on (February 23, 2014, 20:53 GMT)

This was on the cards Aussie batting lack consistency...They either are awesome or pathetic! The same haddin who scored 50 in nearly all ashes innings with avg 62 has failed in all 4 innings Clarke in his last 16 innings was either excellent or was way pathetic.. Marsh and Dollan awesome in the first game and terrible here. Roggers failed in 3 innings here Smith is also on the inconsistent side..Only warner shows some consistency.. Aussies can't correct many things as this is the same lineup plus minus 1 or 2 names who will bring glory who have brought glory. .but as they r not consistent, in between they will lose the games in this manner. I believe, in 3rd game, both Clarke and Haddin will score tons and 5 for mitchs. My money on aussies in 3rd game

Posted by 2.14istherunrate on (February 23, 2014, 20:50 GMT)

I wonder how many people thought that was on the cards. Personally I did,even as Warner and Rogers were seeing the side towards 126-1. The writing was always on the wall-the false sense of security as the prelude to total carnage. Great bowling by Steyn really lit up the show for me-Haddin got a good one. Played to Rogers, at 36 proving his usefulness with his 4th ton in 13 Tests.

Posted by pull_shot on (February 23, 2014, 20:45 GMT)

Comparing with clarke is funny we all have seen clarke situation when there is no help for fast bowlers and his tendency to not trust his players like playing some kid 19 years old instead of lyon and not playing lyon in 2 and 3 test in india after ms dhoni goes hard at him, homework saga, not trusting MJ for ashes in england,his public comments on watson,his treatment towards kwaja but main reason for australia success is they got siddle, ryan harris both of them doesn't leak many runs which allows MJ to bowl with freedom

Posted by JG2704 on (February 23, 2014, 20:41 GMT)

Love the Indian Ts getting involved again.

The series is still all square and while momentum is with SA , Australia's performance vs SA is still better than every other nation in recent times.

Also would love to see the look on the Aus cheerleaders faces - not the ones whopost through thick and thin but those who were giving it the big one as recently as this afternoon. Love it when their comms come back to bite them

As for the series - well SA look to have the momentum but I'd certainly not dismiss Australias chances

Posted by Niceday on (February 23, 2014, 20:37 GMT)

Australians "the great pretenders". They were never going to be a match for decent bowling. They only play well in their own backyard on pitches that suit them.

Posted by TommytuckerSaffa on (February 23, 2014, 20:35 GMT)

This was the greatest display of Swing bowling I have seen in a long time. Watching a bowler move the ball 2 feet in the air and then off the pitch at 144 kph to smash into middle stump or on the knee-roll is a sight to behold and what makes Test cricket great. If you didn't watch the game, check out the highlights - 9 wickets in a session, just an endless wave of mutilation. Dale Steyn you are a living legend of the modern game.

Posted by JG2704 on (February 23, 2014, 20:32 GMT)

@AltafPatel on (February 23, 2014, 13:57 GMT) It worked out well in the end as they needed a review for one of VPs latter wickets

@Cpt.Meanster on (February 23, 2014, 16:42 GMT) Why are you bothering? Aus proved in the 1st test - just a week or so ago that they could play in SA.

Posted by ShutTheGate on (February 23, 2014, 20:31 GMT)

Well the SA fans have come out of the woodwork now that you've won. Must be fair weather fans! Hey, maybe you'll actually get some fans to the ground in Cape Town.

For the Aussies, well this had Durham written all over it. Reverse swing with the combination of a slow wicket is our Achilles heal. It's amazing how they can go from out batting SA on a fast wicket one week ago to playing like club cricketers when the wicket changes.

I'm looking forward to Capetown, I'm expecting the pitch to be quicker and I hope that Ryno has it in him for another test before his surgery.

Posted by   on (February 23, 2014, 20:24 GMT)

@ Emanuel ? Your thoughts are too biased in my opinion. You want Newzeland and Pakistan to be stopped from playing test cricket?? Same Newzeland which thrashed India just a few days back?? Same Pakistan which recently tied series with South Africa who thrashed India later? Same Pakistan who white washed England last time they played them. Had India ever imagined in their wildest dreams of white washing England?? Your thoughts are just too biased because you show the true thought regarding financial superiority of India while trying to belittle other nations.

Posted by StaalBurgher on (February 23, 2014, 20:22 GMT)

@Beertjie - No to Petersen. He is mediocre. Elgar is a more talented player and if not him, van Zyl. Plus Elgar gives some off spin. Neither Elgar/van Zyl are necessarily elite ~50 batsmen but they are better than old Alviro who won't ever consistently average over 40. Too low for a country with SA's player resources. De Kock is a better batsman than them all and should be kept in the team if we are playing 7 batsman. Maybe he will struggle, drop him if he doesn't come right after a few go's.

Smith, Elgar, Amla, Faf, AB, De Kock, Duminy, McLaren, Philander, Steyn, Morkel.

van Zyl, Alviro, Abbott, Hendricks should be the next guys in line. Alviro is 2nd bat replacement until there is someone more promising on the domestic circuit.

I still expect Faf's avg to come down to 40. Hopefully he proves me wrong. But if it does then his spot should also be reviewed.

I would also not have a problem with a proper bowler being picked in McLaren's place. Abbott and Hendricks are better bowlers.

Posted by JG2704 on (February 23, 2014, 20:21 GMT)

Well done SA.

Re Smith's declaration - I'd definitely not say it was that sporting. In fact I'd possibly say it was on the conservative side. 400+ is not a gimme on any pitch and against that was time to bowl Australia out with 3 fit front line bowlers and possibly little more than today's play to take 10 wickets it may have been a struggle. Australia were never likely to chase 400+ in around 80 overs which may well have been all they'd have had. Not sure if the weather would have taken all of tomorrow's play but it could have happened. As a fan I'd prefer to have an opposition side chase down an ambitious declaration than not leave enough time to bowl a side out when there is weather forecast and if I was a SA fan I'd have said well done to Australia if they chased anything 375+ in such a limited time - esp when the side is behind in the series

Posted by mikkkk on (February 23, 2014, 20:13 GMT)

Didnt watch this as I expected it to peter out into a draw but cant wait for the highlights at 9 o'clock. Aussie delusions of grandeur slapped down yet again:-)

Posted by ELPh on (February 23, 2014, 20:13 GMT)

A lackluster performance from Australia in all departments. Congratulations Saf for coming back into the series with a bang. To do so required immense character from the team and in the end they came through. When someone as good natured as Morne Morkel gets revved up and angry you know that the team as a whole was fuming from the loss in the first test. Looking forward to a more equal contest in the final tie.

Posted by haq33 on (February 23, 2014, 20:12 GMT)

The greatest bowler of a generation. Period. When you can literally just read a match scorecard and feel the pandemonium created by one bowler, backed up by a highly able support crew, then you know it is one of those moments in a career that will be spoken of for ages and it is one of those matches the opposition will never forget.

Posted by Jimmyvida on (February 23, 2014, 20:11 GMT)

This tells us that all we have to do is negate Johnson and Australia are in deep trouble. Hope the next test wicket is being prepared accordingly.

Posted by mmoosa on (February 23, 2014, 20:10 GMT)

What was incredible was the skill levels of the S.A team and bowlers in particular..Steyn's about 60-70% now and same for Vern...its exciting to see who Parnells replacement will be...possibly Rory...but hopefully Abbott who has stunning first class career stats and is also younger...an attack of Steyn,Vern,Morkel and Abbott could be very interesting.2 very tall guys and 2 skiddier,shorter types...Abott is miles ahead of Rory in terms of pedigree,potential and performance...Had he been based in the Cape he would have probably been favourite to play in the upcoming Newlands test

Posted by electric_loco_WAP4 on (February 23, 2014, 20:03 GMT)

Well played SA to make unexp. upset after the way they were dismantled by no.1 pace attack at Centurion.For Aussies rare bad game after long run of dominant wins.But wont be too concerned-it's perfect situ. for Aus to win @ CT-a 'final' of sorts !-:)

Posted by Cricinforma on (February 23, 2014, 20:00 GMT)

Agree with the earlier comment bring Mr Chapell on the show, lets hear what he has to say after the convincing win by cricket team-South Africa. Peace

Posted by Beertjie on (February 23, 2014, 19:54 GMT)

SAF are indeed the come-back kings: well done! Some decisions for Newlands. A possible line-up: Smith, Petersen, Amla, du Plessis, de Villiers, Elgar, Duminy, McClaren, Philander, Steyn, Morkel. To counter this lot and bearing in mind that Rhino seems to be feeling the after effects of his Ashes exertions I suggest the inclusion of Pattinson and Watson for him and Doolan. Despite his pair in PE Marsh should play, since he left well at Centurion. Also he got a decent 40 at Newlands 2 years ago on a difficult wicket. Rogers, Warner, Watson, Marsh, Clarke, Smith, Haddin, Johnson, Pattinson, Siddle, Lyon. Although Patto can leak runs, Watto, Sidds, and Lyon are ideal for counteracting such leaks. To win Clarke needs to win the toss, bat, and get a score himself. I expect Lyon to be quite effective, also as an attacking weapon later in the game. This is not a quick pitch, but nor will it be as difficult to bat on as on the last tour because of the time of the year. Mitch and Patto v Saffer

Posted by   on (February 23, 2014, 19:51 GMT)

Congratulations to the South Africans. West Indies loves you

Posted by JG2704 on (February 23, 2014, 19:50 GMT)

@Front-Foot-Lunge-Needs-A-Hug on (February 23, 2014, 11:28 GMT) I'm neutral re this series but when I see these cheerleader comms I'm glad SA did the business

@disco_bob on (February 23, 2014, 10:39 GMT) Didnt quite work out that way did it?

Posted by   on (February 23, 2014, 19:45 GMT)

Congrats to South Africa the best Test Team in the World. I always believe that any team batting first against Australia and scoring an excess of 400 runs will be a problem for the Aussies. I do agree that Australia destroyed England because of their weakness and will to fight back. During the Ashes Australia won because of their bowling while England lost because of poor batting. Here we see South Africa won because of both batting and bowling . Test cricket is the best form of cricket once it involves; Australia, India, South Africa, England, New Zeeland, Sri Lanka and Pakistan the other countries should be banned from test cricket and should only play 50 overs and T20 .

Posted by Neeraj_Sunariya on (February 23, 2014, 19:36 GMT)

Aussies team still retain that X factor about them selves that still all countries want to defeat them :) and feel they have achieved something great.... that's really funny.

Australia no longer a team of past with greats like Warne, Waugh bros, Ponting, Hayden, Gilchrist...

In my opinion, India, SA, Eng are much balanced and much talented players... Its weird that these teams still get beaten by Aus :(....

Posted by only4sand6s on (February 23, 2014, 19:34 GMT)

Bring back Ian Chappell for his comments please...would love to hear him about SA win today.

Posted by   on (February 23, 2014, 19:28 GMT)

Nothing beats test cricket... wow, what a cracker!!

Posted by vsroc on (February 23, 2014, 19:28 GMT)

Posted by Venkat Sraman on (February 27,2014) It has been a great fightback by S.Africa for having outplayed Australia in all departments of the second cricket test match played at Port Elizabeth.South Africa proved their worth of maintaining number one test ranking by the brilli- ant batting display of their batsmen and fine bowling spells of pace and spin bowlers. Special credit goes to Dale Steyn for his fiery bowling burst to wrap up the middle order batsmen of Australia in their second innings.

Posted by wapuser on (February 23, 2014, 19:27 GMT)

Wow!! Incredible y performance by steyn gun.. Aussies thought bit too much and received a well deserved loss that will be itched in their memory for a long time.. Just can't wait for the next match..

Posted by BatBowlCatch on (February 23, 2014, 19:24 GMT)

What a way to silence your critics South Africa. If not for the Australian opening pair this could have been their worst innings ever. They are relying too much on their bowlers and if the pitch doesn't suit they are stuffed. They had a great home summer but their batsmen still have a long way to go to reach the top again. South Africa just need to stabilise their top order and they will be almost unbeatable. A second opener and working out who will replace Kallis in the long run is all that needs to be sorted. Bring on the third test. Some how I thing Aussie might get thrashed again though. Time to stand up Clarke and Smith and be the senior batsmen you now are.

Posted by fair_paly_1 on (February 23, 2014, 19:23 GMT)

Test cricket at its best. SA were awesome. Good contest between the top two teams. After getting annihilated in the first test, the number one team showed, why they are the best, in this test.

It is noticeable how a few fans of only a certain country are bringing their team into it from nowhere and unlike them how the fans of a defeated team are making no silly excuses.

Posted by   on (February 23, 2014, 19:22 GMT)

Just a question the catch that Duminy dropped Warner on off his own bowling when Rogers stood his ground at the non-strikers end thus preventing Duminy from getting to the ball. Could Rogers not have been given out for Obstructing the Field if SAHad appealled? Perhaps not the most sportsmanlike appeal though.

Posted by   on (February 23, 2014, 19:22 GMT)

Haven't seen this level of reverse swing since Waqar/wasim era. Great bowling by Steyn at a crucial stage. Congratulations to SA on massive win.

Posted by   on (February 23, 2014, 19:22 GMT)

How about this for a fact: Shahid Afiridi has played under 14 different captains in ODI s from 1996 to 2014. How Pathetic Pakistan administration was. Since 2003 South Africa had only Greame Smith as captain, Kallis captained when Smith was injured.

Posted by ram91106 on (February 23, 2014, 19:21 GMT)

@GreatestGame...thank you for putting in a valid perspective...Though you guys are fully justified to ridicule the Aussie trolls who were becoming too much to bear with their incessant bleating much like Front-Foot-Lunge(where is he these days btw??) don't understand the malign towards India...what can the team do if the FTP is designed in such a way that makes us stay put here for two years??Bash BCCI for all that its worth(or not) but don't denigrate the performance of the players who give it their all in every performance..I believe that this Indian team fought well during its overseas tours(not ODIs..catastrophic to say the least) in SA and NZL...it was inexperience in crunch situations that let us down...don't forget that India once bowled you out for 84 during the 2006 series..this team has the potential..bowling as well as batting...As Greame Smith said it takes time for a team to gel together so don't judge us based on these tours which were the first or second tours for most!!

Posted by dillyk on (February 23, 2014, 19:21 GMT)

Hope the oz media & fans enjoy the humble pie, we did just beat "best bowling attack" & "best team" into the ground......... if we all used the logic that was liberally chucked around after the previous test where would that leave us?

newlands is gonna be a cracker, deck that will suite both teams very well.... 50/50 for both teams

Posted by   on (February 23, 2014, 19:19 GMT)

Cracking test, as South Africa show why they're the no 1 test team. The decider should be great (shame there aren't more games). Australia (for me) still have a problem batting on slow low pitches, as they did in England, (they also have a problem facing Dale Steyn, but they're not alone there), but their positive approach moved the game on from the potential dull draw it could have been. They should get credit for that, even if it didn't help them this time.

South Africa still haven't worked out how to replace Jacques Kallis (this is hardly surprising: his test batting average is in the all time top 15 (2000 run cut off), and he took nearly 300 test wickets at under 33 (and 200 catches)), but Duminy did a really good job in this game, and Parnell was promising. Steyn and Morkel were outstanding in this game (Philander less so: he seems to struggle with his line to left handers). Johnson was largely neutralised by the pitch.

Roll on Cape Town!

Posted by bumsonseats on (February 23, 2014, 19:19 GMT)

not as good as they think they are, beaten by India 4 - 0 beaten by england 3 - 0 beat england 5 - 0. so the Aussies should go sit in a darkened room,and concentrate on the 3rd test. huff and puff by both supporters and players don't win test matches well played SA

Posted by SL-USA-Lions on (February 23, 2014, 19:15 GMT)

@ Everyone...

Glad to see SA win this one...

Tone is set for the decider...

SA is definitely NO.1 at the moment in my eyes regardless of what AUS players might think of themselves...

Posted by StaalBurgher on (February 23, 2014, 19:14 GMT)

@Hussain Kurawadwala - Makes no difference to cricket in general if there are big crowds. Only the home nation gets that revenue. If SA want more Tests what does it matter to you?

Crowd attendance in SA is low due to economic reasons, transport (i.e. no public transport), over priced food and beverage and horrific potential consequences if you get caught drunk driving (i.e. AIDS from rape in your cell). The vast majority of people that follow cricket in SA have all got satellite TV or easy access to one. Far easier to braai with friends for cheap, drink all you like and avoid all the risks of venturing where the cops/vultures are waiting.

If you go to a local pub the cricket is always on with people watching. The public follows cricket but due to many factors going to the crowd is just not as appealing as watching it on TV. That does not mean SA should not play more Tests.

Posted by polo69 on (February 23, 2014, 19:12 GMT)

Well I guess the Ashes was more a story of England weakness than Aussie strength. SA remain prone to starting series badly. One argument was settled today and that's the SA attack are streets ahead, probably the only attack that could find life in that pitch. In closing you have to say that on balance SA remain the better team, no what happens at Newlands. If you have to choose a combined side to play for your life out of these teams it will be SA minus Faf for Clarke, minus Morkel for Johnson, minus de Kock for Hadden. A toss up between JP and Smith. But they're the better side on balance. Newlands will suit Philander and he is due. Let's hope it's a cracker

Posted by R_U_4_REAL_NICK on (February 23, 2014, 19:12 GMT)

What a fantastic display from the South Africans! I don't know which is the more depressing: remembering this is only a three match series, or constantly reading the same moaning from BigBooHoo about pitch-tampering. Get over it! The number one team must be able to play/adapt to most- if not all- conditions.

Posted by sidh78 on (February 23, 2014, 19:06 GMT)

this shows that india's batting is very strong compair to aus and other teams.yong indian batsman made 600+ runs against this world class SA attack in 1test.

Posted by priceless1 on (February 23, 2014, 19:05 GMT)

agree with @Aussasinator , if De lange is fit then he should play the third Test

Posted by Doolman on (February 23, 2014, 19:04 GMT)

Great win boys . Batting great , bowling was excellent but lost intensity in difficult patches. If we can't get them out, hurt them... Umpires were on the beach today, very laid back and not in form IMO . My peaceful warrior is back, game on you too good for your own good Aussies. Retain the squad for CPt .

Posted by StaalBurgher on (February 23, 2014, 19:04 GMT)

I can't say this enough. If they pick Kleinveldt for the CPT Test ahead of Abbott it will be a travesty. An utter travesty. Typical racial politics destroying sport.

Kleinveldt career avg 29, str rate 60 ; current season avg 37, str rate 72!

Abbott career avg 21, str rate 47 ; current season avg 13, str rate 34.

And yes he should be in ahead of Hendricks, although I wouldn't cry too much about that because they are both good enough for international cricket. Abbott is still ahead in the pecking order. No reason why Hendricks should get preference when Abbott has already made a debut. Hendricks will get his chance but he has to wait like everyone else does.

Posted by FighterKallis on (February 23, 2014, 19:03 GMT)

Steyn can do it on any pitch. he is slightly off colour. But he came back. Aussies are chokers and with AB , amla , steyn on song they will get a thrashing in capetown. Capetown is a heaven for saffas. may be 100 or less all out . Who's going to comin for parnell. bring hendricks or de lange . not rory please

Posted by letsgoproteas on (February 23, 2014, 19:01 GMT)

and....

Once again the mighty Protea's silence another competitor and their fans...

Once again the Steyn Remover silences his critics.... I don't know what else this poor guy has to prove.

It's the same story with every test series haha. It's actually amazing! Maybe the Proteas coaching team instruct the boys to start slow with the purpose of giving the competition false hope... I don't know.

WELL DONE BOYS! We were always behind you and never questioned your skill, even after that last blip of a game.

PROTEAS!

Posted by StaalBurgher on (February 23, 2014, 18:58 GMT)

@Aussasinator - I might be wrong but I don't think de Lange is back up to speed since they remodeled his bowling action to save his back. I don't think he has even played a 4-day game this season.

Abbott is on top of the pile of wicket takers this season with an avg of 13 and strike rate of 34. With a remarkable debut already under his belt he must surely be in line to take Parnell's spot.

But knowing these selectors of ours with their unspoken quota rules Kleinveldt will probably be drafted in. No idea why he is even in the squad. He has a career avg of 29 and strike rate of 60. Miles worse than Abbott.

Posted by Greatest_Game on (February 23, 2014, 18:55 GMT)

@ StaalBurgher commented "… another defeat won't topple SA from the no.1 spot… If Oz win the last Test and the series well done but they will have to keep playing well to pass us on the log... when that happens they will be no.1 .. That is unless they do an India and refuse to put a foot outside home for 2 years."

Staaal, there is only one point I have to add to your comment. Even if Aus, as you say, "do an India and refuse to put a foot outside home for 2 years," SA will be back to Aus soon enough. They will have to beat SA at home too, as I don't see SA collapsing against any other team in the near future, & SA have a good recent record in Aus. Ironically, given recent history (& not my opinion,) India probably stand a better chance of beating SA at home (in India) unless SA come up with much better spin options.

For that reason I do believe AWAY match & series wins should be weighted for more points than HOME wins. That would make the rankings more representative, I believe.

Posted by   on (February 23, 2014, 18:51 GMT)

SA is a well balanced team, but in the end it depends on the form of Amla for batting and Steyn for bowling.

Posted by   on (February 23, 2014, 18:50 GMT)

Every 1 calling for more tests I think that distinction goes to more historical rivalries like Ashes or maybe Ind Pak matches ( they haven't been playing for more than 7 years but once they resume expect no less than a full house at least on day 1 .The crowds in SA are nonexistent .And if we have 5 matches there is a high chance the series will be over midway. 3-2 or 2-3 scorelines in tests are highly unlikely especially nowadays

Posted by   on (February 23, 2014, 18:49 GMT)

What a performance by SA, so many players standing up and to get them all out with a bowler short on a flat, slow and low pitch , truly a amazing effort. I always believed Aus are a one man team, with everyone riding on the back on MJ's sensational bowling and they've proven that. As well as Lyon bowled, its almost pointless if it takes 50 overs to get 5 wickets. Anyway i would like to see a greenish pitch at Newlands, not an excessively bouncy pitch just a little grass to give Steyn that late outswing we haven't seen for a few seasons.

Posted by   on (February 23, 2014, 18:46 GMT)

Smith's a class act .I want him to be the only and second batsman from SA to get 10000 runs (ABD will follow soon maybe Hash). But I think he might have to go soon from 1 of the formats atleast.In test he has scored a century against India but that won't do .Expecting a big score from him in 3 rd test. Mostly his place in ODI is gone to Q De Cock already . Even Clarke is failing.In fact lately none of the captains are scoring heavily except BMAC and maybe Mathews

Posted by ram91106 on (February 23, 2014, 18:43 GMT)

@Jaffa79...thanks a tonne for the compliment(hoping it was...:))...My respect for Dale Steyn grew manifold when he decimated the Indian team for 76 in Ahmedabad...before then though there were ripples in the community to us Indian fans he was just another pretentious punk who would be shown his rightful place by the famed Indian batting line-up...and then when all of them fell like dominoes it was then that I realized that this was a once in a generation bowler,that I was watching something truly spectacular....I have always felt that he is like Carlos Tevez(him of Manchester United not the FIFA Manager/Football Manager team of later years)..there is a sheer physical presence and the atmosphere is always buzzing when he gets the ball and magic inevitably happens...

Posted by StaalBurgher on (February 23, 2014, 18:43 GMT)

@Adoh - Of course. Commentators on Cricinfo, in their wisdom, have long ago established that Steyn is actually rubbish. He has only been the no.1 bowler since 2008 due to a run of luck, bad batting from the opposition and favourable conditions. Luckiest man alive, truly.

The fact is in Tests your stats does reflect your ability. Morkel did bowl well in this Test but unfortunately he does not do it often enough. That is why he averages 30 with a 56 strike rate. Good but not spectacular. Steyn has at times put in awesome spells and not gotten rewards. That is just the way a game with discrete play intervals (similar to baseball) go. If Morkel was more consistent he would more often get rewarded with wickets even when he is bowling less well.

Posted by AussiePhoenix on (February 23, 2014, 18:42 GMT)

Congrats SA, top effort. MJ has the magic mo, but Amla has the beard of fury. Too good in both departments. Roll on game three, where Oz can start the fight again.

Posted by   on (February 23, 2014, 18:40 GMT)

Hope JP can sort inconsistency with bat .Keep same team get 1 more pacer. Pls no Robbie P and Tahir .Frankly speaking parnell was gr8 in his first over then seemed a bit ineffective but still contributed better than spinners. IMO SA don't need a spinner JP is good enough to get crucial breakthroughs. De Kock is young should be kept .Can some1 tell me who was keeping him or AB?I think centuries from three batsmen and nearly 1 from a fourth is good news .U couldn't keep amla and steyn out of action for long.3rd test is finally a dead rubber. This is the first series in a looong time in which the last test is not a dead rubber .Exciting stuff .SA will be tough to beat. I'd say Hughes in for Doolan/Marsh.Marsh is an extreme version of R.Sharma I think .I remember this article comparing Hughes and kohli .Unluckily for Hughes he hasn't had a permanent spot in the 11 and when he is there he bats at different positions.

Posted by tom120 on (February 23, 2014, 18:34 GMT)

First of all congratulations to SA team. They bowled exceedingly well and deserved to win this match. I am an Aussie fan here. It was proved today that SA bowlers are better than Aussie bowlers. But, it can't negate the fact that SA were also defeated by Aussies with the similar margin (Aussie victory margin was bigger though.) Same old story as far as Aussie batters are concerned. Similar thing happened in England in 2 matches while chasing 300 odd runs, 120-130 runs with the loss of one wicket and then the loss of 9 wickets within 80-90 runs. Aussie batters and bowlers find it difficult to bat and bowl in slow and swinging conditions. I hope the pitch at Cape town would be fast and bouncy otherwise the result would be same as this match. They have to think about Clarke's dismal form 11 innings without scoring past 25 runs. Harris is a good bowler, but he looked rusty in both the matches so far, I guess he's got a problem with his knee. I hope he'll be as good as before after surgery.

Posted by Aussasinator on (February 23, 2014, 18:33 GMT)

Amazing Dayle. A champion's display. now SA need to get Marchant De lange for the final Test in Parnell's place. Both Morkel and De Lange bowling at the throats of the Aussies, especially Warner and Clarke, instead of length balls, will tame the Aussies forever and leave scars.

Posted by   on (February 23, 2014, 18:31 GMT)

Well done South Africa Keep sinking the BIG THREE! Javed

Posted by Adoh on (February 23, 2014, 18:31 GMT)

Wow, Australia have out choked SA on this one. Good performance by SA, great comeback, this keeps the series well and truly alive - the last test will be a corker. Terrible performance by the most of the Aussie batsmen (and yes, they are batsmen, not batters - batters play baseball). Warner and Rogers were exemplary in their performance, nine other Australians, well, showed less guts than a fishmongers basin. I wouldn't be a happy coach right now. I wasn't actually that impressed with Dale Steyn this match, I think his figures were flattering, I thought Morkel bowled alot better and was very hostile - good on him, but his figures did not reflect it.

Posted by Greatest_Game on (February 23, 2014, 18:30 GMT)

@ gimme-a-greentop wrote "Well I also hope my fellow countrymen don't get carried away and start the putrid gloating that characterized the comments after the first Test, even though it would be fair after some of the utter rubbish posted here."

As a Saffa, I heartily agree. This was a fantastic match, the series is still alive, and gloating & unsporting comments will only detract from a great test match, and a heck of a battle to come in Cape Town. The Australian players fought hard, and did not conduct themselves with ill grace. There is no need for any of us South Africans to behave differently. Let us show the best of South African character to the world. We have no need to behave like any nation. We can, and should, set the example of good grace & sportsmanship. We should be ourselves.

Posted by gimme-a-greentop on (February 23, 2014, 18:30 GMT)

To those saying AB is dishonet etc... there is no way he could have told. He felt the ball hit his glove, it bounced down from there and was back in the glove, all in a split instant. In the end it was referred and the right call was made. I don't think that reflects on AB's character.

Posted by syedharisshah on (February 23, 2014, 18:29 GMT)

superb superb bowling by dale steyn. changed the match in one spell, that's why he is one of the greatest of all times. now 361 wickets in just 72 matches, with an avg of under 23 and strike rate of just 42, in the era where most bowlers happy with an avg around 30, he is the legend. i beleive he will end up his career with at least 430 wickets, go man u r greatest of all time

Posted by StaalBurgher on (February 23, 2014, 18:28 GMT)

And let us not suddenly start underestimating Johnson. He is a mightily improved bowler from 2 years ago. Will he maintain the outrageous performances he had over the last 6 games? No way to know until he stops getting wickets, or gets them less frequently. PE might also just be a blip for him. Most likely he is a permanently improved bowler but his purple run will come to an end, everyone's does. He might just not quite be the God-of-bowling as the Ozzies would like to think.

Just look at Clarke. He almost single handedly kept Oz in the series against SA in Oz (ok, with a little bit of help from Hussey). We were also told he is the God-of-batting then. The best batsmen in the world, eventhough he wasn't actually no.1 on the rankings. Now where is he? That doesn't mean either of them are rubbish.

Respect the opposition and you will have less egg on your face.

Posted by pat_one_back on (February 23, 2014, 18:25 GMT)

What a remarkable end to the test, SA must be pumped after the pummelling MJ gave them last match which caused many to hit the panic button. 1-1 with 1 to go, and wow it should be a cracker. Lehmann will be berating his batsmen and contemplating fresh legs in his bowling attack. Watson will have to come in now I'd say and possibly Patto, likely for Ryano who just hasn't shown his usual penetration, no shortage of effort but perhaps the pain of his knee has knocked a few % off his best. Job well done SA.

Posted by   on (February 23, 2014, 18:23 GMT)

Wow!!!!My prediction of the second test and suggestion of reverse swing for proteas pace spearhead in the comments posted after first test have come true/got value.Congrats steyn!But mate, tell your batsmen collegues to get ready for nasty ones targetted at upper part of their body from Mitch and co.Very little chance in 3rd test unless you delivered something thrice in magnitude the present one.Long live Saffa-Aussie super rivalry.

Posted by Cricsnake on (February 23, 2014, 18:20 GMT)

Congrats SA. You deserved this victory. Steyn is too good for Aus. He deserves his place for No. 1 bowler. Aussies played well too. Chris Rogers had amazing 100 against quality attack. It's good cricket which excited us. Kudos to both teams to level the series.

Posted by DarwinAkbar on (February 23, 2014, 18:19 GMT)

What a fascinating Test between #1 and a resurgent #2! Steyn showed once again why he is the #1 bowler in the world. As a Kiwi, I am a neutral, but it is a good thing that South Africa managed to finish things off today and leave the series at 1-1. SA dominated the entire Test and deserved the win, and it would have been a travesty if the weather had saved Australia. Now onto the final, winner takes all!

Posted by   on (February 23, 2014, 18:18 GMT)

Australia missed watto ..his bowling and batting ws missed badly ..warner and watson were the only two who can make a chase like this easy ..i dnt believe y on a Earth is doolan selected , he cn play only backfoot deliveries , aus rely too much on MJ , cummins has to be brought back ..lyon is a fing for aus , harris is mainly two yrs away from retirement , same goes for rogers but he is a class player ..hope 2 c aus win ..

Posted by dabbadubba on (February 23, 2014, 18:18 GMT)

aus is just like india .. a home team bully.. SA showed how ordinary johnson is after measuring him in the first test

Posted by klempie on (February 23, 2014, 18:14 GMT)

"Clarke, though, tipped his bowlers as the better unit: "I'm a little bit biased, but in my opinion, this Australian attack is the best in the world. What I've seen from the Australian fast bowlers over a long period of time, I feel we have the best attack in the world." :o)

Posted by gimme-a-greentop on (February 23, 2014, 18:11 GMT)

Well I also hope my fellow countrymen don't get carried away and start the putrid gloating that characterized the comments after the first Test, even though it would be fair after some of the utter rubbish posted here. STILL 5 DAYS OF CRICKET LEFT! Australia are also capable of fighting. They were amazing in the first Test on the back of an inspired Mitch and good batting but seemed totally out of their depth in these different conditions. Their batting approach was way too risky. Fine if you have a big lead on 1st innings, then have a crack. Just as SA did. Those who said SA were playing for a draw should really watch a bit more cricket before commenting. Who knows what surface is going to be provided in the Mother City. Could be anything, but I'm willing to bet it won't be a raging green-top. And why not? SA are playing at home, and have never grumbled about the pitches in other countries. Indeed their away record shows them to be the most adaptable team.

Posted by Jaffa79 on (February 23, 2014, 18:11 GMT)

@ ram91106 Love the Luca Brasi/Dale Steyn comparison. Very original!

Posted by Greatest_Game on (February 23, 2014, 18:11 GMT)

@ TommytuckerSaffa asked "Is this a record? 9 Wickets in a session? Please confirm."

That is not a record, truly, Tommy. Do you NOT remember 47 all out, in 18 overs? I do have to admit that the overs were interrupted by tea when Aus were 13/3 in 6.4 overs, so the wickets did fall within two separate sessions, I guess. But, they fell in 18 overs, which is just over half a session. (Or a session & a bit if England are bowling for the draw!)

Posted by StaalBurgher on (February 23, 2014, 18:09 GMT)

I am also so thankful that finally they are trying to rely on Duminy to perform the spinner's role. If a specialist spinner cannot be a consistently greater threat than our no.6 batsman's part time off spin then he doesn't deserve a spot. He will probably still get clobbered at times but what difference will that make? Since Harris our specialist spinners get clobbered all the time.

Hopefully they will now stick with Elgar who is a slightly better batsman than Alviro. According to Al Pacino sport is about inches and Elgar definitely has an inch on him.

Posted by   on (February 23, 2014, 18:08 GMT)

Dale Steyn..You are Marvelous..Such a delight to watch, I didnt eat, sleep or even changed my channel when ur bowling. genius..

Posted by gujratwalla on (February 23, 2014, 18:08 GMT)

Here is to the Australian fans who were calling SA lucky and Clarke the best batsman in the world!From 152 -1 to 216 all out.I said your batsmen will crumble and the Proteas square the series.I will not be surprised if Australia get another Steyn drubbing in Cape Town.Had England at least a Morkel to support Broad the Ashes will still be with England.Australia are still in search of someone to fill in Pontings place and now Clarke too is in eclipse.Great stuff South Africa.

Posted by Yankydoodle on (February 23, 2014, 18:08 GMT)

Honestly, i cannot stop smiling. This was an incredible performance. This is what test cricket is about. Nothing compares to test cricket.

South Africa taking 9 wickets in the final session. You are worthy of that no.1 spot.

Posted by   on (February 23, 2014, 18:07 GMT)

AB masterclass & JP comeback in d 1st inngs, #100 in d 2nd & STEYNgun finished that in style

Posted by KashifTasneem on (February 23, 2014, 18:05 GMT)

South African proved again why they are the number ones. People starting praising Australian bowling but this test showed that Australian bowling works on helpful tracks but the South African pace attack can take 20 wickets on any wicket. No comparison between the 2 sides. South Africa too good. I still dont believe they have cancelled the Test Championship. This is real cricket absorbing and this test showed once again, Test Championship needs to be held. I would even go and say you may cancel t20 World Cup but we need Test Championship to show that cricket is not dying, its still up-to its standard.

Posted by   on (February 23, 2014, 18:05 GMT)

Aus used to have batsmen such as Boon, Marsh, Hayden, Mark and Steve waugh, Taylor, Ponting, Martyn, Langer, Slater and followed by Symonds, Gilly, etc. The likes of Roger, Warner, Steve smith don't seem in the same category. Also they need to play Watson or Faulkner as the bowling seems to be overdependent on Mitchell.

Posted by   on (February 23, 2014, 18:05 GMT)

Normalyl on cricnfo on the twitter bar, Warnie is full of chirp. Where was he today?

It is so typical of Aussies - spot the difference between SA & Aussue quicks - one set do not waste their energy on vocals and the others....?

Posted by Crick.lover on (February 23, 2014, 18:03 GMT)

@StaalBurgher, I totally agree with your measured views on the game of cricket. Far too many people comment before engaging their brains and make sweeping statements and predictions about what is going to happen.............!? It is not just your fellow South Africans making these comments but bloggers from every cricket playing nation!

Posted by MianMoosa on (February 23, 2014, 18:02 GMT)

I am a big cricket fan, not only for pakistan but where ever there is quality test cricket, i often make my own team for every team in my imagination,s after Proteas defeat in centurion, i think in my mind inclusion of dean elgar, quinton dekock & wayne parnell in place RObin & alviro petersen & ryan mclaren may help them in adjusting their balance after king kallis,,& i am proud that i was perfectly right, in spinning conditions they can include a specialist spinner in place of parnell or phillander,,,,Can,t wait for the 3rd test now as series is nicely poised

Posted by   on (February 23, 2014, 18:01 GMT)

Umpires allowed the extra 30mins because they assumed getting 3 wickets wouldn't be a problem for the best side in the world. Rightly so...

Posted by StaalBurgher on (February 23, 2014, 17:59 GMT)

@petertherock - No another defeat won't topple SA from the no.1 spot. Only by another team actually holding more points are they the no.1 team. Why? Because Test cricket must be measured over time. If Oz win the last Test and the series well done but they will have to keep playing well to pass us on the log. So, ja... when that happens they will be no.1, not a moment sooner. That is unless they do an India and refuse to put a foot outside home for 2 years.

Posted by   on (February 23, 2014, 17:59 GMT)

What makes S.A.the number one team is their ability to bounce back, and that mental toughness to pick themselves up. This was seen in the series in Australia and in particularly in Pakistan as they came back from behind. If only this mental strength could be translated in one day-ers, S.A.would surely have won an ICC title. Congrats and well done!

Posted by cloudmess on (February 23, 2014, 17:58 GMT)

Australia were 150/1 when I last looked... this is more like the 2013 side again, collapsing like a heap of cards when the pressure is on and when Mitchell Johnson doesn't have a fast, Australian-type pitch to bowl on. Johnson has played an absolute blinder in the last few months, but if he has a quiet match, Australia don't have a lot else to offer - whatever they tell themselves that recent success has been down to team balance, Clarke's "inventive" captaincy etc etc

Posted by   on (February 23, 2014, 17:58 GMT)

This shows true quality of SA pace battery. MJ is nowhere near to Steyn or Morkel's class. He's just a hard pace track bully. No variations at all except those short balls. He'll be as ineffective he can be in 3rd test. And of course get slaughtered in IPL. Compare that with Steyn. Simply fantastic!

Posted by biggyd on (February 23, 2014, 17:58 GMT)

pitch showed how one dimensional oz bowling is, and how brittle top / middle order. now the doubt is there, they will be lowhanging fruit in cape town. v impressed with lyon and smith tho. cmon saffas!

Posted by ozymandiasza on (February 23, 2014, 17:55 GMT)

@Dr.Navdeep Johar, what are you on about?

Posted by MeTalHeD69 on (February 23, 2014, 17:55 GMT)

@Petertherock SA wouldn't be toppled from another defeat. They are at the top of the test rankings by a large margin. Even if Aus whitewashed them, SA would still be at the top. SA are at least 20 points ahead of 3rd placed Australia, who are only a point behind India. While every victory counts, the overall points system is used to determine who is the best OVERALL, by who wins the most matches and series. Australia did well in Centurion but what the stats mean is that SA have consistently outperformed every other team over the past few years. Australia winning some recent matches will count towards their ranking, but they need to consistently win away from home, over a few years, before they can "topple" anyone. Keep in mind that before their Ashes performance at home, England and India defeated them. If they went to SA with consistent away wins against England and India, then there'd be more merit to Michael Clarke declaring his bowling attack the best, when it isn't.

Posted by Fan1969 on (February 23, 2014, 17:55 GMT)

I am neutral as an Indian and just love the cricket, particularly great fast bowling that we lack.

Loved Johnson in the first Test and the SA response in the second. Frankly man for man SA are a better side but the Aussies have spunk.

Australia have not lost a series to SA in SA ever since 1970. So this is nicely set up. I would bet on a Clarke century in Newlands and it will be upto SA to get the Aussies. They have much to gain by registering the first series win on Aus at home after 6 failed attempts, 2014 being the 7th.

Great advertisement for Test cricket!

Posted by ram91106 on (February 23, 2014, 17:49 GMT)

Dale Steyn---what can be said about one of the greatest fast bowlers of the cricketing history??He is like the Mario Puzo description of Luca Brasi.."Does not fear anyone,if he so chooses he respects a person...a force of nature..."So true...where the first day pitch was looking low,slow,flat and a typical sub continental track here comes the howitzer blitzing his way to four wickets in quick succession...high quality fast bowling..pace,aggression,swing,reverse swing...reminded me of watching Wasim Akram in the 92 World Cup..can't believe the match is over...the doggedness with which Chris Rogers batted shows the mental fortitude of the previous generation of Aussie players..sadly though the sole remaining bridge to that dogged bloody desire to triumph won't probably be playing in another 5 years owing to a dodgy back..where are the great Aussie batsmen who showed flair,brilliance,grit and determination??107,66 and a string of single digits...what's happened to the Aussie batsmanship?

Posted by cricaddict11 on (February 23, 2014, 17:46 GMT)

Thank you very much Proteas for showing the world that any team is not the best team by only winnig at home. Jhonson is a very good bowler but he will never be in the league of Steyn. Steyn is one of the greatest of all time. For my knowledge Wasim and Steyn were the TOP fast bowlers world have seen in last two decades. Some of Aussi commentators and reporters were including Jhonson into the all time greats list and i feel for them. Hopefully Jhonson show some character in the next game as did by Steyn recently after the first match against India and prove me wrong. It is not one series nor one or two years that Steyn keep doing this and he should be given the full credit he deserves for that.

At the moment (for some years now) there are no better bowler in the world than Steyn. Keep going man. (Fan from Sri Lanka)

Posted by   on (February 23, 2014, 17:42 GMT)

after the opening partnership oz scores read like this: 5, 0, 1, 0, 1, 6, 6, 3, 0. Steyn the destroyer!!

Posted by aativas on (February 23, 2014, 17:41 GMT)

What a game of cricket! I am loving it! At the end of day one, who could have imagined such a result? This is incredible. Such matches played with intensity and without any untoward incidence, will keep us glued to test cricket. well done Smith and Co. Best wishes for series win!

Posted by   on (February 23, 2014, 17:40 GMT)

I truly love it when the Aussies fans are put in their place by the No 1 team in the world. Go proteas! Now if history tells us anything, its that Cape Town will be ours and with it...the series.

Posted by ZkAneela on (February 23, 2014, 17:38 GMT)

Absolute fun and joy watching test cricket b/w SA and Aus.As a true fan of SA, I can proudly say that they are world no.1 team for a very very big reason.

Posted by   on (February 23, 2014, 17:36 GMT)

I was gutted after the 1st test, not because we lost but the manner in which we had lost. We rarely go down without a fight and there was no fight at Supersport Park.

Talking about a fight, again there was no fight from us in PE. No Sir!! We got to see, was a bloody war. Great stuff boys. I just want to see the same attitude in Cape Town. The result can take of itself, win or lose.

Posted by   on (February 23, 2014, 17:35 GMT)

India are top team too. Unfortunately dirty politics has spoil it. Gambhir bhaji and some of better players like Nehra and mishra are out. Sad. Let's see what kids to today and failures like Rohit and ashwin do. Yuvraj shd have been in Odi team as we are just a bunch of rookies. Especially this pace attack is worse in our history.

Posted by   on (February 23, 2014, 17:34 GMT)

Well done to SA, Dale Steyn was massive today once they got that ball swinging. I thought Aus battled it out pretty well with the bat but you just can't hold a bloke like Dale all the time. I guess the ever drier pitch was more or less responsible for the reverse but a pity for aus that we couldn't find the same movement in SA's second innings.

I think Watto has to come back for Doolan. I like Doolan but he is clearly limited in his ability to get forward when the ball is outside off stump and that is a major limitation and he has been found out. Could easily have been out five times today for his five. Marsh is also a concern but I'd rather keep a bloke who gets a good ball first up than a guy who still after the best part of an hour at the crease just cannot contend with the bowling.

Aus outplayed here but like SA fans after the first test, I strongly believe our boys can bounce back from this and take out the series at Capetown, we've shown we can win, just gotta perform!

Posted by   on (February 23, 2014, 17:34 GMT)

@staalburger... no chance of backing off now I have had nice discussions from fans all over the world but this oz arrogance went to such an extend that we will keep giving it to them till it enters their minds that they cant just come here and disrespect everything that our great team has achieved. They dished it out so now they have to swallow it

Posted by   on (February 23, 2014, 17:33 GMT)

When I see Amla and AB bat I sometimes dream of what it would be like to be a great test batsmen and then I see Mitchell Johnson and Dale Steyn in full attack mode and that thought quickly disappears

Posted by SAF-Fan-no-1 on (February 23, 2014, 17:33 GMT)

Well done SA............Chepple is wrong saying 3 nil white wash from Ausee and you can't compare Styen V/S Michell neighter with Morne. Proteo are the No one Side in the World. Look Hashim I saloot him, when he play play with classical inning.

Posted by DerbyshireAussie on (February 23, 2014, 17:29 GMT)

I believe the outcome of the third test will depend heavily on who bats first, as this one did

Posted by SHER-A-PANJAB on (February 23, 2014, 17:29 GMT)

Very good test ....Well Done SA ...this time you have batter side than first test .....carry on same way in the 3rd with DALE MAGIC ....Elgaar and D.kock should be kept in ....good luck

Posted by CricketingStargazer on (February 23, 2014, 17:28 GMT)

Chester-Le-Street again! Many congratulations to South Africa for turning this around. There may well be a lot of complaints about the umpiring allowing the extra half hour (but they were ultimately vindicated when the last three wickets did go down) and dodgy umpiring (but losing 9 wickets in a session is quite a trick, even if you get the odd rough one).

3-121 for Mitch. 1-137 for Ryan Harris. It rather supports the suggestion that when those two don't fire for whatever reason, Australia struggle to hold their own with the dodgy batting.

Posted by   on (February 23, 2014, 17:27 GMT)

It is miracle win, though Smith declaration was premature .

Posted by samincolumbia on (February 23, 2014, 17:26 GMT)

This match proved that India's batting line up is stronger than aussies! SA bossed the arrogant aussies throughout the match and also proved that without Johnson firing, the rest of them are just an over hyped bunch, with the exception of Lyon and Rogers. Great to watch SA playing and winning the game like gentlemen and not falling to the level of boorishness, which is the aussie trademark.

Posted by SurlyCynic on (February 23, 2014, 17:26 GMT)

Great series this, glad it's coming down to the last test. Superb effort by the SA bowlers with Parnell injured. Haddin needs to watch that bat-pad gap vs Steyn!

On day 1 everyone was commenting that this was a definite draw and it didn't even make day 5! Just shows that a lot can happen in a few days.

Hope SA start holding their catches as the next test could be tight. Best of luck to both teams, can't wait for Cape Town.

Posted by GermanPlayer on (February 23, 2014, 17:25 GMT)

Nine wickets going down in a session? Boy that was some performance! Where are the arrogant Aussies?

Posted by TommytuckerSaffa on (February 23, 2014, 17:25 GMT)

Is this a record? 9 Wickets in a session? Please confirm.

Posted by sanhan on (February 23, 2014, 17:24 GMT)

What a brilliant from the Comebacks! These two tests are indicative of the chasm between 20/20 + ODI and TEST cricket. The character instilled in this SA side is immense. They fight with conviction,resilience, purpose and skill. Excellent support was given to the two best cricketers in the world [AB and Steyn] by their teammates. Def no Two-trick-pony team.

Posted by Samdanh on (February 23, 2014, 17:24 GMT)

SA bowlers made the difference. Morkel in first innings and Steyn in the second. They have the edge with a varied attack. Morkel with pace and bounce. Steyn with reverse swing, Philander with seam and accuracy. They do not need a spinner. Duminy should be sufficient. For Aus, their batting under pressure is a big question mark. Congratulations SA. The first two Tests have looked like knock out bouts of a boxing match. The last match should be a humdinger unlike the first two which resulted in either teams dominating. That will help Test Cricket

Posted by Neeraj_Sunariya on (February 23, 2014, 17:24 GMT)

Being an avid cricket fan and with unbiased view here (am an Indian Supporter), I will say that SA deserves #1 ranking. But they are not same as great teams like WI or Aus of past...

Those teams used to stream-roll opponents when they were #1 with kinda players they had. SA is not doing same....Just compare SA with Australia in this current series:

Batting: SA has 3 solid proven batters with great records - Smith, Amla and ABD. Aus has just 1 - Michael Clarke.

Bowling: SA has a World Class bowler - Dale Steyn and two really good bowlers - Morkel and Philander. Australia has only 2 really good bowlers - Johnson and Harris, it is just that Johnson hit the purple patch :)

Point I am trying to make is Australia is doing good with whatever limited players they have currently in pushing opponents hard and not allowing them to walkover. This is what I always admired in them i.e. die hard attitude (though lately it is declining).....

Posted by   on (February 23, 2014, 17:22 GMT)

Hate to say i told you so, but i told you so.

Posted by   on (February 23, 2014, 17:21 GMT)

That means MJ is effective only in fast tracks...&some people, were like he is best bowler in the world Best bowler is the one who performs no matter wat the pitch is and steyn-gun keeps reminding the world that he is class apart from others.....

Posted by   on (February 23, 2014, 17:19 GMT)

#RESPECT, Dale Steyn, the best ever.

Posted by   on (February 23, 2014, 17:15 GMT)

Absolute mayhem, holocaust and destruction as Dale Steyn and others destroyed Australia. Reminds me of the 1979 Melbourne Test when Australia, chasing 382 to win against Pakistan folded from 305 for 3 to 310 all out. Sarfraz Nawaz taking 9 wickets.

Posted by barryhalo on (February 23, 2014, 17:14 GMT)

Its not the first time steyn has produced spells of reverse swing like that, its just some people constantly forget what skills he possesses and that he is one of, if not the greatest fast bowler of all time.

Posted by StaalBurgher on (February 23, 2014, 17:14 GMT)

It is unfortunately my own fellow countrymen are now also running away with statements about the 3rd Test. Can't we just be a little humble? This is sport and victory is never guaranteed.

Posted by Kiyaora on (February 23, 2014, 17:14 GMT)

Weak links of Aus & SA Team - Clarke for Aus, & Smith for SA. expected a Captains knock from Clarke. Kudos to ABD, JP, Rogers & Warner. Gud luck for to both teams for a wonderful, interesting & nail biting 3rd test. SA is really top team as they had one bowler short, & the void was filled by JP, a great match fo him and what a team player is he!!!!

Posted by Neeraj_Sunariya on (February 23, 2014, 17:13 GMT)

Great win for SA!!!.Steyn was simply just awesome and who actually made the real difference :)

Posted by ForeverProteas49 on (February 23, 2014, 17:13 GMT)

@Iqbal Satrio Nindito Bounce back, got to see that at Newlands, remember 46/10, looks like we will have to remind you ;)

Posted by petertherock on (February 23, 2014, 17:10 GMT)

SA were the far better team in this test as were Australia in the first test. Johnson was brilliant in the first test as were Morkel and Steyn in this test. It's a game of ebb and flow, so sweeping statements of which team is the best are unwarranted until the result of the third test I believe. SA have earned their spot at the top of the tree but another defeat will topple them.

Posted by TommytuckerSaffa on (February 23, 2014, 17:10 GMT)

Don't believe the hype from the Ashes. SA deservers its No.1 tag.

The difference in bowling attacks noticeable. In non seam friendly conditions Aus attack was toothless, hence their failure in India and at PE. To be the best in the world you have to perform in all conditions. Aus bowling attack is a fair-weather attack and alarmingly doesn't have the ability to bowl reverse swing.

Posted by metadata on (February 23, 2014, 17:10 GMT)

Can we please play more test cricket. These 2 and 3 test series are not good for rhythm. We have a side to rival the aus and WI of yore. Hacks like Kimber doubt we are in that league. Smith said it. We need time to play together, and we can't gel straight away.

Posted by   on (February 23, 2014, 17:10 GMT)

Hashim Amla's inning was one of his best. I enjoyed it (y)

Posted by   on (February 23, 2014, 17:09 GMT)

I said at the end of the Centurion match, take MJ out of the attack and Australia will struggle. Yes the pitch was flat and did not aid his pace or bounce but Steyn showed the way on flat wickets. Pace and bounce accounts for a lot but when you haven't got that to work with, then you need something else. Well played Saffers and looking forward to an exciting match at Newlands. I'm sure the Aussies will play better but so much depends on their top order firing and Warner must surely run out of luck soon. If the Saffers play like they have in this match, I think the Aussies will find it hard to stop the juggernaut that this SA side is turning into. Fantastic advert for test cricket. Love it

Posted by   on (February 23, 2014, 17:08 GMT)

Chaps, lets not get arrogant ourselves. There is still one test to go and the Aussies will be firing at full steam. Great vitory for South Africa but do not underestimate the Aussies. Yes, South Africa is the better team all round but even great teams can be beaten as we saw in Centurion, it cannot always be your day. The South Africans can be proud and know they can win and will win if they continue to play intellegent cricket and hats off to Smith from a critic.

Posted by   on (February 23, 2014, 17:07 GMT)

"We will never know how accurate the South Africa Meteorological Department would have been." ........ JHust go online and check out the weather!

Posted by StaalBurgher on (February 23, 2014, 17:07 GMT)

I hate gloating from opponents and from my own countrymen. This result really pleases me because I am fed up to my eye balls with hearing how (1) Steyn (who has been the no.1 Test bowler since sometimes in 2008) is actually rubbish, (2) how SA are rubbish eventhough we have not lost a series since 2009, (3) three how we are supposedly cowards despite winning some significant victories away from home.

Can't we just respect the opposition and accept that this is sport? Things don't always go your way no matter how good you are. I readily admit SA won't be number 1 forever but I find it very upsetting with how much disdain most of the world looks at this Proteas team.

We are not guaranteed to win the final Test and even if we lose it certainly doesn't mean previous victories are tarnished. Just get a grip people and maybe you will all end up with less egg on your face.

Posted by   on (February 23, 2014, 17:06 GMT)

steyn mother of all swing bowling.what a great treat watching him bowl tdy. it has been such great entertainment watching these two teams. it was mitchel johnson first and now steyn.he was the mom of the match for me. Can't wait for the third test.going to be a cracker.

Posted by Proudly_SA.47 on (February 23, 2014, 17:05 GMT)

My Proteas do it again!! It doesnt even matter to me anymore what the outcome of this series is. Just as long as my Proteas has once again shut up another team claiming to be better and the best. Go ahead and doubt us again, Australia! Go ahead and doubt our bowling attack! Go ahead and doubt Steyn's form again! Why does he even get doubted? Just because he doesnt take 5 wickets every innings? Go ahead and doubt Hashim Amla's form again! Why was he even doubted? Just because he doesnt score a century every match? South Africa does this all the time, prove their doubters wrong! It was just disgusting the way Australian fans here were so disrespectful and biased, to say that they have the best bowling attack in the world. What! This just after 6 matches? The very same attack that was white washed in England and Indian just a few months ago? Are u kidding me? Than I guess the South African attack must be OUT OF THIS WORLD! Steyn, the best bowler for the last 6 years, South African attack the best in the world for the last 3 years. Mitchelle Johnson has been brilliant in the his last 7 matches, no doubt. But like I said after the first test match, Johnson was the only difference, he is a player on form, but as we all know that form is temporary, but class is forever, and that is the difference between these two attacks. Let Aus continue their good form for the next 2 to 3 years before they can start claiming they are the best.

Posted by SA_FAN315 on (February 23, 2014, 17:02 GMT)

this has set up the final test beautifully.....SA have shown their fighting spirit and why they are the no.1 side in the world....... this match showed that AUS depend heavily upon Johnson but SA can depend on more than just a single player...... GREAT of see all the contribution made by Elgar,AB,Duminy,Amla,Faf,STYEN,Morkel,Philander

Posted by   on (February 23, 2014, 17:01 GMT)

Australia might want to play the kids now for a change but the stubbornness of Cricket Australia will mean the team will continue to go backwards by using Doolan as a scapegoat for Watson's return for the 3rd test

shame that with such a good youth system that the youngsters are not given a chance and whatever chances they get regardless of performance are not going to be allowed to show why they should be in the side and not allowed to make Australia the number 1 side in the world for the long term

Posted by   on (February 23, 2014, 17:01 GMT)

Steyn is fantastic. On such a dead pitch to bowl with such venom, pace is amazing. Loved it. Well played SA, u truely deserve No 1 test rankings.

Posted by   on (February 23, 2014, 17:01 GMT)

@disco_bob : mate where are you just want to remind of some great statements you made before the game:

" SA are going to have to realise that they have been ambushed. It will be an achievement if they lose by less then 150"....

yeah close call we won by 230 +

"Saffers could hope for Johnson relapse but now they know that would just be a dream. They go into the PE game knowing they cant cope" .....

yeah mate they coped pretty badly!

I warned before the match that big talk doesn't help. SA always has a bad 1st test because we play so few test matches that we often go in cold but as soon as there is some miles in the legs there is no one that can stand toe to toe

off to Newlands where we have an impeccable record, australia have had their sniff but im afraid another terrible pasting is coming in cape town

Posted by VinodGupte on (February 23, 2014, 16:58 GMT)

rofllllllll SA is # 1 for a reason. this was coming. most followers knew SA would come back hard and beat AUS. steyn and morkel will win it for SA again and SA will win the series 2-1. Johnson was good in the first test but unlikely to repeat that performance.

AUS was made to look like a very good side by the mediocre ENG team. but they have a lot of batting problems and they were exposed in this match.

Posted by Jagger on (February 23, 2014, 16:58 GMT)

No wonder its hard to win away. The decision must be made: Either umpires adjudicate on all LBW's or they keep right away. Sick and tired of getting out to the umpire's call on what ordinarily would have been ruled not out by DRS.

Posted by Pelham_Barton on (February 23, 2014, 16:57 GMT)

@Ameya Shinde on (February 23, 2014, 16:14 GMT): Here is playing condition 16.2.1: "The umpires may decide to play 30 minutes (a minimum of eight overs) extra time at the end of any day (other than the last day) if requested by either captain if, in the umpires opinion, it would bring about a definite result on that day [this is in addition to the additional time provided for in clause 16.1.3 above]. If the umpires do not believe a result can be achieved no extra time shall be allowed." There is no specified number of wickets that must be down. In fact, I remember in 2000 England claimed the extra half-hour against Zimbabwe with only 5 wickets down, but those wickets had fallen in 11 overs. I have just checked the facts on this one in the 2001 Wisden.

Posted by Valavan on (February 23, 2014, 16:56 GMT)

@Cptmeanster, SA proved no.1, but mediocre india is above Australia, who won a test in every outing to SA but India, bunch of laughing stock still searching answers for their wonderful away record similar to early 90s. If Australia is overrated, neutral fans, where will you put the paper champions, keyboard warrior INDIA. Not able to win a single game in last 2 outings, but nevertheless back to point, SA is always the better team in the current bunch, Aussies under Lehmann showing some glimpses of their past. cricinfo please publish

Posted by AltafPatel on (February 23, 2014, 16:55 GMT)

Finally they got bonus for unfortunate they got in entire game with drop catches and not using review. When Rogers was hanging on strike by trying to be on strike taking single on last delivery, who thought he will run-out for leaving strike on first ball ! Who though Elgar will take final wicket in crucial time when 3 overs were left! SA deserved even more than these, but that's enough to level the series. All the best SA...

Posted by Amol_Ind_SA on (February 23, 2014, 16:55 GMT)

I hope SA prepare a similar pitch for the Final Test. SA bowlers are effective ANYWHERE. AUS bowlers need a green tinge. ...And sending lots of love for Dale Steyn from India. Sheer Awesomeness.

Posted by   on (February 23, 2014, 16:54 GMT)

that bowling from dale steyn reminded me of the two masters of reverse swing twin W's(wasim nd waqar).absolutely brilliant from this little champ.

Posted by Great_Lion on (February 23, 2014, 16:54 GMT)

I called that earlier "steyn will destroy the australian top order with anger and more pace".I knew he will perform like this because that's how he perform in last 6 years.Mj had a off test here but he will bounce back in next game but my dear aussie friends, Steyn is the best in the business and clearly the world no: 1 bowler.

Posted by   on (February 23, 2014, 16:53 GMT)

@Mohammad Cricket - only game in the world where "the big three" are the 2nd, 3rd and 4th best teams in the world!

Posted by AltafPatel on (February 23, 2014, 16:52 GMT)

After defeat in first test, those have words about SA for looking whitewash ahead with furious MJ and team. Well, SA have shown again and their class and that they are not No.1 Test team in the world for nothing. They took account for every blow they took in first test, massive defeat by 231, gave MJ head storm while bat and made struggling for every wicket looking ordinary, Shaun getting pair, Haddin 1 & 1, Smith return in 1 delivery, Doolan struggling for every single, Clarke looking tail-ender. Now it's SA's turn to take the final lead...

Posted by   on (February 23, 2014, 16:51 GMT)

that bowling from dale steyn reminded me of the two masters of reverse swing the W's. absolutely brilliant from this little champ.

Posted by StaalBurgher on (February 23, 2014, 16:50 GMT)

Posted by Potatis on (February 23, 2014, 10:38 GMT) Unfortunately it sounds like the rain tomorrow will rob Australia of a well earned victory.

---

Love it.

Posted by Gareth_Bain on (February 23, 2014, 16:49 GMT)

R40 well spent! I had a great day with the band and Dale Steyn! I must say though, that after experiencing the match live, I fully understand why Dharmasena can't hear the snicks! The band and crowds were deafening at times!

Posted by   on (February 23, 2014, 16:48 GMT)

Well played SA.

Aussie fan here, and i thought it would be undeserving if we hung on for a draw on a match where we were completely outplayed.

Rest assured, its 1-1 and nobody won the series yet. We'll bounce back :)

Posted by   on (February 23, 2014, 16:48 GMT)

And Who thought Smith made the wrong choice in declaring early...Boi were the doubters wrong. some of the comments on here are fickle fans discrediting South Africa with the decisions they made.

Posted by   on (February 23, 2014, 16:48 GMT)

loved the match...SA was superb...earlier I thought they would not come back..but they have shown to be a great side/number one side.

Posted by ZainE111 on (February 23, 2014, 16:47 GMT)

At the beginning of this test, people were calling it the most boring test match ever played. I don't think they will say that now!

And if any Aussies are feeling bitter about the last half hour or the inside edge, it may help to remember that if this was a full five day test without weather issues, SA would have won convincingly.

Posted by   on (February 23, 2014, 16:45 GMT)

Steyn is just awesome. now he has added reverse swing to his weapon list. i wonder its a night mare for batters around the world. i think batters all around the world will not sleep today. Man steyn has to be best bowler ever lived in world cricket. no wonder why other great batsman retired recently. I salute..

Posted by   on (February 23, 2014, 16:44 GMT)

rogers tried to continue the match to 5th day! but SA performed well overal.

Posted by JimmySA on (February 23, 2014, 16:44 GMT)

I just want to be very bias for a minute. Congrats to SA for bringing Australia down to earth. So many comments at the start about SA playing for a draw and how flat the pitch was etc etc. some guy even made a comment that he will eat his hands off if SA take 20 wickets in the match...@Ameya Shinde, I guess the umpire felt that the worlds best bowling attack shouldn't have a hassle taking the final 3 wickets. :)

Posted by   on (February 23, 2014, 16:44 GMT)

I would just like to say to all the arrogant Australians who suddenly thought they were the best in the world. This SA side are class, they are fighters and you re going to have to do something really special to beat us at newlands.

Posted by   on (February 23, 2014, 16:44 GMT)

WOW, WHAT A FINISH!!! What a great display of test cricket! Australia did well to resist for so long. Dale Steyn is a wonder! What a great bowler, completely buried AUS in that one over! SA deserves this win, they dominated the 4 days!

Posted by No.444 on (February 23, 2014, 16:43 GMT)

Well done SA. Great performance. Aussies must be a little agrieved at that last wicket but it would have been equally unfair if they were saved by rain. Looking forward to a cracker at Newlands.

Posted by Mayan820 on (February 23, 2014, 16:43 GMT)

Now the Ausie excuses starts, simply because Ausie can never lose . . .

Posted by page8383 on (February 23, 2014, 16:43 GMT)

Just some of the dumbest cricket I've ever seen by Australia this test match. Batted for barely over 3 sessions the entire time. To get essentially no runs from Doolan and Marsh for the whole test is fatal. We deserve all the criticism we get thrown our way. 9 wickets in a session. And a runout when just trying to survive. I'm dumbstruck at the idiocy.

Posted by ninjapintu on (February 23, 2014, 16:42 GMT)

Oh what a great match!! So like South Africa to hit back so hard. They did against Pakistan, they did it against India and now they have done it against Australia...

Posted by Cpt.Meanster on (February 23, 2014, 16:42 GMT)

Well done SA !! You proved you are the BEST test team in the world. This mediocre Aussie team were thrashed 4-0 in India and showed that they are useless in conditions that doesn't favour them. SA have demonstrated they can be competitive anywhere in the world which is why they are no.1 in test cricket. Aussies have a lot of thinking to do. Mitchell Johnson has shown he's a good bowler ONLY on bouncy pitches. I hope the Aussie fans eat a lot of humble pie and admit they are an ordinary team. There will be two sets of fans who will celebrate today - South African ones and English. As a neutral, I am happy to see the series levelled with 1 more to play.

Posted by No.444 on (February 23, 2014, 16:40 GMT)

@ Ameya Shinde. There is a guideline of 30runs if chasing and 3 wickets, not 2 if bowling, but it's ultimately up to the umpires. With tomorrow's rain around it was a no brainer.

Posted by GermanPlayer on (February 23, 2014, 16:39 GMT)

They said Steyn lost his pace! They said Philander was a green-top bully! They said SA had no decent spinner! They said AB had no flair! They said it was going to be 3-0! Where are they?

By the way, Steyn showed his class with that display of reverse swing. I wonder why the Aussies, despite claiming they were the best in the world, couldn't get anything out of the pitch! No. 1 attack? I can only say lol.

Posted by   on (February 23, 2014, 16:38 GMT)

ITS PROVEN NOW, why South Africa is the No 1, and why steyn is the best Bowler in all formats of the world. PERIOD

Posted by page8383 on (February 23, 2014, 16:36 GMT)

All the Aussie's had to do was not implode epically. Instead they lose 9-90. Doolan and Marsh look like children out there. Get. Rid. Of. Clarke's form is beyond an issue. Shameful runout. Just brainless behaviour all-round. Well done South Africa - bowled like men possessed and the Aussies went to water BIGTIME!

Posted by   on (February 23, 2014, 16:36 GMT)

Who is overrated again? Thats why it's called a series people.

Posted by philander50 on (February 23, 2014, 16:35 GMT)

GET IN THERE, how do my Aussie friends feel now, haha

Posted by   on (February 23, 2014, 16:35 GMT)

Where is Randyoz now ? Australia belonging to the top of the world tree ? hahaha. Last game was a one off match for saffas and they have rightfully demolished australians. Truth is if Mitchell doesn't fire, Australia has a below average attack and their batting; the less said about it the better.

Posted by nyazdanie on (February 23, 2014, 16:35 GMT)

Because of Amla, I support SA, congrats SA.

Posted by   on (February 23, 2014, 16:32 GMT)

Big blow to Big 3. Congrats SA

Posted by   on (February 23, 2014, 16:14 GMT)

how they granted extra half hour.Its only given when there are 2 wickets to take

Posted by   on (February 23, 2014, 15:50 GMT)

I thought Australia had the best bowling line-up in the world,we had physical and psychological scars from Johnson's bowling,Philander is a fair weather bowler,SA are defensive,AB is boring etc.

Posted by geoffw on (February 23, 2014, 15:47 GMT)

Aussie top order = found out. Totally expected. Pretty good bowling too. No rain, please

Posted by   on (February 23, 2014, 15:43 GMT)

Steyn creates wickets out of nothing !! Now he's added reverse swing to his repertoire as well !!

Posted by Assertive-Indian on (February 23, 2014, 15:36 GMT)

Now it is clear why Aussie bowlers were successful recently, and, in particular, MJ. They rely on excessive bounce from the pitch, and, if that is not there, they become pretty harmless. No wonder they are totally ineffective on slower subcontinent-type tracks like this one. If this pitch had bounce, MJ would have bounced out the opposition like he did in the first test. So there is this lesson for Saffers. Prepare a similar pitch in the third test, and you will be victorious. And the thing is that once Aussies start losing, their team spirit goes for a toss. Clarke-Watson relationship will become even worse, and a homework gate may happen again.

Posted by soviet-cricket on (February 23, 2014, 15:36 GMT)

Where are oozie who rate harris above philander. Next test philander's home ground

Posted by   on (February 23, 2014, 15:33 GMT)

Steyn blows them away .Never had doubts about his effectiveness .He had a sort of barren time last test acc to his standards but surely Aus have taken a chill pill .MJ was not bad but if he is the best bowler (poor guy hasn't said anything as usual fans propping him up) he'll have to be more consistent than 6 matches .Hope its a one off as the joy u get while watching an MJ fifer is something else.

Posted by   on (February 23, 2014, 15:28 GMT)

clark mentioned rite, it may be 4 days game or he may not mean that way...yo

Posted by Jaffa79 on (February 23, 2014, 15:23 GMT)

Well played SA. This is why you are the best in the world. I am English and we capitulated against Aus in the summer as they did against us (not as badly!) the series before. It is the sign of a great team that can rise up when they under the pump and I, like many I think, thought hurricane Johnson was going to blow through your batting order. This did not happen and shows that there is clear daylight between SA and the rest.

Posted by   on (February 23, 2014, 15:22 GMT)

how the hell is warner getting runs.he's not good as his stats show in this series and in the ashes.he's got 10 chances in this test and he got 5 chances in the previous test. warner is the most overrated batsman in the world and he has no class in his batting and remember that 'form is temporary but class is permanent'.

Posted by   on (February 23, 2014, 15:21 GMT)

maybe Clark needs to check his form too.... maybe its too early...

Posted by TommytuckerSaffa on (February 23, 2014, 15:21 GMT)

Listening to some of the comments during this series. I was lead to believe from some Aussie posters and David Warner that Vernon was a 'fair-weather' bowler and can only take wickets on green, seaming wickets. He's not doing too badly on this flat, dead pitch isn't he?

Posted by TommytuckerSaffa on (February 23, 2014, 15:16 GMT)

Good knock from Buck Rogers. I think he has saved his spot against Watson for the 3rd Test. Can't say the same for Doolan or Marsh though.

Posted by   on (February 23, 2014, 15:12 GMT)

steyn storm.....takes away everything frm aussiees

Posted by No.444 on (February 23, 2014, 15:04 GMT)

I see MJ is back on course to return to his usual 30 ave. Pity, he brought the two teams closer together for a bit. Maybe the rain will fill in now that MJ has returned to ordinary. The big difference is that Steyn has 6 YEARS of top bowling behind him. MJ HAD 6 matches. Hope he comes back because Vern will need some company at the top next week.

Posted by   on (February 23, 2014, 15:02 GMT)

Steyn has ripped Australia's heart out and tossed it to the side with some incredible swing bowling. Moments like these that you can just sit back and laugh at people suggesting that there could be anybody better than this guy. Its about stepping up when te team needs you most not just when everything is going well and he does it game after game.

I have to get a quick jibe in to xtrafalgarx who said after the SA innings "I will eat my hands if Steyn runs through Australia"... well mate hope your hungry

Posted by adrianf on (February 23, 2014, 14:58 GMT)

Dale's back! What unbelievable skill and quality. Set's the series up brilliantly for Cape Town. The Ausies should have Watson back, which gives them better balance, while SA have Dale and Hash back to their best. I would bring in Abbott for Parnell.

Posted by TommytuckerSaffa on (February 23, 2014, 14:53 GMT)

Aus best bowling attack in the world?? Don't make me laugh. SA didn't get to No.1 by accident and they are quite happy to show why. One bowler short through injury and still ripping through this frail batting line up. Dale Steyn - take a bow, what a demonstration of skill and swing bowling.

Posted by screamingeagle on (February 23, 2014, 14:53 GMT)

Was very rewarding to stay and watch Dale do his thing.

Posted by   on (February 23, 2014, 14:46 GMT)

@pras punter Big up to you for acknowledging the facts. It takes a big man to admit and accept defeat. You hit the nail on the head. To be the best you have to perform in any conditions and the South African bowlers extracted the maximum out of a so called dead pitch. Clarke is a classy batsmen who is just in a rut of bad form. The true character of the Aussie team has been tested. Well done to our boys for really showing us why they are the no1 team in the world.

Posted by tom120 on (February 23, 2014, 14:42 GMT)

Pathetic show by Australia, especially after the brilliant first wicket partnership. Forget about tomorrow , there are still 20 overs remaining today, this match could very well end today. And it is amazing to see reverse swing starting from the 30th over and still going strong till the 51st over as I am typing now. Australian bowlers need to learn from SA bowlers how to reverse swing. Now Australia is in dire straits, and desperately needs rain tomorrow the whole day tomorrow, only if they manage to play all the overs today.

Posted by   on (February 23, 2014, 14:42 GMT)

Well there goes the match. Dale Steyn bowling like the best bowler in the world again, Chris Rogers keeps Shane Watson from taking his place. Not an unimportant knock from Chris here, Australia needed him to step up big time in the early innings of the series and be a leader and he let them down, now he's been needed to try and save the match and he's done everything you could ask of him. Pity it wasn't in the first innings of course.

We can't really write off Alex Doolan and Shaun Marsh one match removed from their excellent work in the first test. But it's sadly predictable isn't it? This is what you get when you pick players who are capable but have never consolidated their potential into consistency let alone domination. But once they're picked they have to stay for at least three, then they can join George Bailey and Usman Khawaja in the Shield.

I would tip Watson to come in for Doolan, simply because Doolan was picked as a replacement for him in the first place.

Posted by handyandy on (February 23, 2014, 14:41 GMT)

Hopefully this will end the Marsh experiment ... although they sent Hughes home.

Brilliant.

Posted by GermanPlayer on (February 23, 2014, 14:36 GMT)

Did you see that from Steyn?

Posted by MonkeyBooBoo on (February 23, 2014, 14:34 GMT)

Just finished my rain dance, it is now raining on the Gold Coast..doh

Posted by disco_bob on (February 23, 2014, 14:34 GMT)

That is some fantastic swing bowling from Steyn. SA have deserved to level the series. Looks like same as Perth, we'll have the tradition grand final at Cape Town.

Posted by TheBigBoodha on (February 23, 2014, 14:27 GMT)

Jaffa79, the series was close. It was the failure to acknowledge this which led to England's downfall in Ozl. England won only one game convincingly, two close, and were convincingly outplayed in two rain-affected games. And all that on doctored dry turners. That's why they got annihilated in Australia. By my estimates 16 of the last 17 tests Australia have played abroad have been on dry turners. WI, SL, IND, ENG, SA. There was a time when we used to get a fair run when we travelled, but now opponents don't even try to pretend they are not doctoring - e.g comments by curators in India and SA openly admitting it, including directly consulting with team captains.

Posted by PrasPunter on (February 23, 2014, 14:27 GMT)

Hate to say this, but I think this test is a fair reflection of where the respective teams stand.

SA batted really well in the first dig - surprised to see that none of the Aussie bowlers reversed the ball on a dry wicket. If we are to pride ourselves as the best bowling lineup, we must perform on all sorts of wickets. Aus bowling has been a huge let-down here.

What flight had our batsmen had to catch ? Warner, Clarke, Haddin, Marsh - all played rank-bad shots in the first one.

And SA bowling has been pure class so far. Really extracted a lot on this dead wicket. And they reversed the ball pretty well. Wondering why none of our bowlers couldn't do it. With due respect to Billy, it will help if someone can coach our bowlers to reverse it.

Doolan was embarassing to say the least. The way he poked that at the ball didn't look great at all. If Watto is fit, drop Doolan and get him in.

We should be happy that we have won at-least one test here.2-1 for SA.

Posted by TheBigBoodha on (February 23, 2014, 14:18 GMT)

Well as I predicted you can't put in sub-par shield players and expect them to perform for Australia. It only took one test for Sean "2.8" Marsh to restablish his batting average. Did he even hit a ball this test? If an armchair mug like me can predict the outcome for players picked, why can't the selectors? Doolan is not much better, but I suppose he will keep his place for the next test when Watson returns for Marsh.

Posted by   on (February 23, 2014, 14:15 GMT)

Australia still in with a sniff if both Clarke and Rogers are there at stumps. Agonising to see #3 and #4 score 14 runs between them for the match, particularly galling after their great knocks in the previous game, and disgusting when players with monster seasons like Hughes and White are sitting out. One thing that Australia has done wrong in the past is to drop players too soon and chop and change too often. Assuming Watto can't bowl then give Doolan and SMarsh a last roll of the dice and make a decision from that.

Posted by Jaffa79 on (February 23, 2014, 14:14 GMT)

@ Aaron Aaronson...yes Clarke did declare in England during the 5th Test but he had NOTHING to lose! His team had been soundly beaten 3-0 so why not? Also, he was 15 minute away from the series being 4-0. I wonder if he would have done this if the series was close?

Posted by disco_bob on (February 23, 2014, 14:08 GMT)

Well that's the Marsh experiment over, I'd still keep on with Doolan though.

Posted by AltafPatel on (February 23, 2014, 14:03 GMT)

Decision of not using DRS in last wicket of Aus not only cost 37 runs but also few overs they could have score 30 odd runs which means total lost of 70 runs for SA. Very disappointing, unprofessional performance by SA.

Posted by AltafPatel on (February 23, 2014, 14:02 GMT)

ABD has been sloppy through out the match whether catch drop, not using DRS, even when last pair of Aus was there. Is he trying to make way for captaincy in case they lose the series?

Posted by xtrafalgarx on (February 23, 2014, 14:00 GMT)

Not a comforting innings from Doolan. That was like slips practice that innings, every second ball he was edgind or playing and missing. Questions at no.3 again.

Posted by AshwinPandey on (February 23, 2014, 13:59 GMT)

The players are not bound by any rule in ICC to walk or to accept that the catch was dropped. Its the matter of "CRICKET WITH ETHICS AND PRINCIPLES". If a batsman does walks and a fielder does accepts then they can get "SPIRIT OF THE CRICKET" award for sure.

Posted by AltafPatel on (February 23, 2014, 13:58 GMT)

Lots of drop catches, not using DRS on many occasions. It seems SA not willing to win the match. They just want to pass 5 days, whatever result comes.

Posted by AltafPatel on (February 23, 2014, 13:57 GMT)

Why Smith so sloppy with using DRS. Atleast should contribute from other way if not one possible with batting. Even in first inning, when last pair of Aus was there and there was appeal for Siddle for caught behind, what was the reason to bank last remaining review !? The wicket is already not in bowlers' way and such wasteful of DRS and dropping of catch can cost history to be created on last day.

Posted by xtrafalgarx on (February 23, 2014, 13:54 GMT)

Doolan being very edgy here, hopefully he can get through it. If he can, it will be a great achievement for him and the team.

Posted by   on (February 23, 2014, 13:54 GMT)

all captains need to take some lessons from clatkes school of declarations. declaring while behind on first innings V west Indies 2012 and giving England 220 odd off 40 odd overs in day 5 5th test English ashes

Posted by   on (February 23, 2014, 13:48 GMT)

@Snambidi: a sporting declaration? Haven't seen a more generous declaration in recent times? what about Clark in 2012 declaring their first innings against the west Indies despite being 40 odd runs behind, or Clarke in 5th test of English ashes, declaring to give England a target of 227 in 44 overs. SA cannot win the series if they don't win this match. Smith will have egg on his face if the rain comes tumbling as predicted. A series draw will be nearly as good as a win for australia not loosing against the best team in the world, while the best team in the world robs themselves of a win by playing slow, boring cricket.

Posted by ModernUmpiresPlz on (February 23, 2014, 13:43 GMT)

If Doolan can survive any period of time here I'll be pretty impressed with Morkel and Steyn both getting a ton of reverse into the right handers. Going to be a struggle.

Posted by xtrafalgarx on (February 23, 2014, 13:40 GMT)

I must say, i am dissapointed by what i have seen from AB. I assumed he was an honest cricketer for some reason but he appeals a lot for things that clearly aren't out. But i guess he does what he has to do to win the game fore his country.

Heartening cricket from Australia, they need to do this more often in first innings though.

Posted by R_U_4_REAL_NICK on (February 23, 2014, 13:37 GMT)

SA really missing Parnell here. Forget the bad use of DRS - SA really need to work hard and earn wickets here, instead of waiting for mistakes. Match is still interestingly poised; a few quick wickets would lift the South African's spirits, but there's a long way to go. I reckon Smith should bowl a few overs himself like Clarke did...

Posted by ModernUmpiresPlz on (February 23, 2014, 13:32 GMT)

I can't believe how many people think that Australia will actually make the total. Must be trolling. Gerry_the_Merry has it right, 140 odd right now is nowhere near 448. Not even close. If Australia get anywhere near 448 it'll be a miracle. SA may have scored 450 against India chasing the record but the SA attack is so far superior to what India can dish up it's not even comparative.

Posted by TheBigBoodha on (February 23, 2014, 13:30 GMT)

Nikon, there's no "wow!" In it. Bowling last SA have only managed one fortunate LBW decision against 141 runs. Warner should not have been given, as it was a "maybe" call, as the DRS showed. Umpires should give benefit of the doubt to the batsman. It went to be bowler this time.

Anyway, SA has had by far the best of conditions. If they can't get Australia out for less than 300 then it says something about the bowling attack - or maybe the dull pitch they prepared to neuter Johnson. I'd be calling that karma.

Posted by Albie_Hanekom on (February 23, 2014, 13:25 GMT)

Those footmarks that the part time spinners are bowling into will probably be the cause Australia's demise in the end.

Posted by disco_bob on (February 23, 2014, 13:22 GMT)

@Nikko Chunn "...winning a test is usually about taking twenty wickets - something Aus cannot do..." reading these comments can be hazardous, I almost choked on my apple pie and tea. I could have sworn we'd taken 20 wickets just last week and wrapped up the Test with more than a day to play. And in the Ashes I think it's the first time a side has taken all 100 wickets on offer. As to 'suffering' a declaration, better to wait and see what happens tomorrow because it may very well be SA who will suffer from that declaration, especially if it's tomorrow which is exactly 44 years since SA last won a home series against Australia at the Wanderers.

Posted by MonkeyBooBoo on (February 23, 2014, 13:15 GMT)

Been cursing that band in the crowd all game, but it just saved Rogers. Thank you, you debacle of a band you.

Posted by Kashi0127 on (February 23, 2014, 13:15 GMT)

What was Graeme Smith thinking declaring with one bowler short and hardly any spinners and so much time for Australia to score? Also the wicket is still good to bat on. History and past records be damned - Australia will win this one.

Posted by vstrider on (February 23, 2014, 13:14 GMT)

Watching this match i find it hard to understand why the Aussies gave Broad so much stick and called him a cheat for not walking.... Kettle Pot black comes to mind

Posted by Gerry_the_Merry on (February 23, 2014, 13:06 GMT)

Chris Higgins, Warner is just out, Steyn is beginning to reverse swing, runs have dried up, rough patches are suddenly helping the spinners, and 2/290 looks far away.

Posted by   on (February 23, 2014, 12:56 GMT)

Wow!! People are still saying South Africa have played the match incorrectly and batted too slowly and so forth!? Nonsense! They only had to bat to a declaration in their second innings due to a big first innings which resulted from HOW THEY BATTED! Now, with another day to go after today... and Warner dismissed (he batted nice and fast, but, now he's out), it is up to South Africa, who have set Australia a massive and massively difficult (historically) to achieve 448 to win, to bowl them out and have enough time to do it if they are good enough. After all, winning a test is usually about taking twenty wickets - something Aus cannot do, since they have been hitherto outplayed and suffered a declaration. South Africa been criticised for 'slowness' is, yet again, a lack of understanding by thoroughly impatient and unknowledgeable t20 freaks. SA are in easily the best position, one they have earned.... you can never be 100% sure you will win and trying to achieve this state is pure greed.

Posted by   on (February 23, 2014, 12:45 GMT)

150/4 on the cards here!! We are going to win this match with part time spinners

Posted by disco_bob on (February 23, 2014, 12:32 GMT)

As I predicted there would be more twists and turns, Australia to get on top, that won't be the end of it, still a long way to go and a few wickets can fall together. What we want to see though is some top order backbone, Warner and Rogers have ticked the box. This is exactly the type of situation where Watson would bugger it up. Warner gets out then Watto comes in and plants his leg or slashes a four and nicks next one to slip and suddenly it precipitates a collapse. We may very well lose but we need to see at least Doolan and hopefully Clarke carry on the good work. Doolan absolutely needs to keep Watson out although it's more likely Marsh who needs to look over his shoulder.

Posted by TheBigBoodha on (February 23, 2014, 12:25 GMT)

0/100. Although I expect Australia to lose by 100-150 odd, this is heartening stuff. Just as Australia had the better of luck in the first test, SA has had the better of it here. I think SA batted for about 16 hours both innings and only one edge went to a hand. I have no idea how this is possible, but it happened. It's probably just luck. At any rate, my takers that it really shifted the attitude of the AUS bowling plans and the entire way they approached the game. The became a little overly defeatist, I feel. I think they expected the same thing would happen when SA bowled. But it didn't, and I think SA got about 5 catches behind. That really made a huge difference to the way the two teams approached bowling. Now in the second dig, so far SA are struggling to get an edge. It really does make a huge difference to an attack centred on pace bowling.

Posted by Front-Foot-Lunge-Needs-A-Hug on (February 23, 2014, 12:15 GMT)

@whofriggincares, you're right, 448 is hardly a sporting declaration! SA blew this game with slow first innings scoring. I'm sorry but you can't do that against the Aussies and expect to win.

Posted by   on (February 23, 2014, 12:10 GMT)

they have the batting to do the job if they don't lose focus. having a definite target will certainly help unlike batting in a first innings of a match. patience and focus is key

Posted by keralite on (February 23, 2014, 12:08 GMT)

Big risk taken by Smith, considering they are one bowler down. The pitch looks good to bat on. Australia have a chance but it still will be a huge task. Thanks to Smith for making a match out of what coukd have been a boring draw.

Posted by   on (February 23, 2014, 12:02 GMT)

The way things are going Smith will be the one praying for the rain tomorrow. Australia to be 2 for 290 at stumps.

Posted by legfinedeep on (February 23, 2014, 12:01 GMT)

A horrible declaration from Smith. I hope SA loses. Aussies do NOT do rearguard batting, and you know they will go for the total and not play defensively. Smith given them ample time, a nice flat non-threatening pitch, and a bowler short. Aussie fans rejoice, and thank Smith for gifting the victory on a platter through his generous declaration

Posted by whofriggincares on (February 23, 2014, 11:50 GMT)

Since when has 448 been considered a sporting declaration? Of course Smith would have wanted more but because of the way the first test went he couldn't afford to bat any longer considering the weather forecast. If the Aussies are good enough to case these runs ( and that is a massive if) then they deserve every bit of credit they receive. Smith would be a very nervous man about now although I think the most likely outcome is a protea win closely followed by a draw and an Aussie victory a long price outsider.

Posted by DragonCricketer on (February 23, 2014, 11:49 GMT)

I loved the way Warner slammed Morkel out of the attack with 18 off the over after a vicious bouncer to the head in the previous over from Morks.

Posted by Front-Foot-Lunge-Needs-A-Hug on (February 23, 2014, 11:43 GMT)

@disco_bob, we should have the total down to about 180 required by stumps. Will leave plenty of time to knock them off even if there is a bit of weather around tomorrow. It will of course depend on how soon Smith realises his mistakes and goes into draw mode like they did against India recently.

Posted by TheBigBoodha on (February 23, 2014, 11:41 GMT)

Letsgoproteas, the SA attack is on par with Australia's. I think that is a reasonable assessment after three completed innings of the series. I would expect SA to win this 9/10 times, but I think Australia have some chance given the conditions and the fact that SA are a bowler down and that their spinner is basically a part-timer. Smith and Clarke are excellent players of spin. Conditions may improve for bowlers tomorrow with humidity and pitch deterioration, but I expect that it will be tough work today.

Posted by disco_bob on (February 23, 2014, 11:34 GMT)

@TommytuckerSaffa, Rogers playing for his place? Highest run scorer over 10 matches in the Ashes from both sides inc Bell, Cook, KP, Clarke and more, in the side that just dismantled SA last test and you reckon he's playing for his place cause of low score in the first innings? By that reckoning you should be calling for Smith's head too. Morne being take. To the cleaners with the new ball. Smith blundered sending us in at Centurion due to "statistics" now it looks like another blunder based on a dodgy weather forecast.

Posted by Front-Foot-Lunge-Needs-A-Hug on (February 23, 2014, 11:28 GMT)

SA fans, get your rain dancing hats on. SA scored so slowly that they couldn't set a big total and this one is not out of reach. The wicket is good, you're a bowler short and the Aussies high run rates make this total look pretty easy in 5 sessions.

Posted by ModernUmpiresPlz on (February 23, 2014, 11:26 GMT)

Looks like Warner is going to try and win it before tea.

Posted by   on (February 23, 2014, 11:25 GMT)

Nice and peaceful innings........

Posted by   on (February 23, 2014, 11:20 GMT)

I think Smith has taken a bit of a risk. Australia can still win this. I never count the Aussies out, at any time, on any track and regardless of what team. What is good to see is a positive and attacking approach rather than some of the conservative / defensive stuff we have seen in the past. It's good for cricket and whatever happens SA have forced many people to reconsider some of the unreasonable and downright silly comments that were made on days 1 and 2 of this test.

Posted by Shaggy076 on (February 23, 2014, 11:16 GMT)

I've been critical of defensive declarations ie Mccullum and Mathews in recent times but SMith I think has done a good one. I didnt htink he would be so attacking but if there is weather around tomorrow and your 1-0 behind you have to win this test to have any hope of winning the series and thats whats it all about. Besides there are good reasons why the highest 4th innings total is lower than this target.

Posted by mzm149 on (February 23, 2014, 11:04 GMT)

In the last couple of months we have seen miracles happening in test cricket. First almost successful chase of 450 runs by South Africa against India and then chase of 300 runs by Pakistan in 2 sessions. I am optimistic about another miracle here.

Posted by DeckChairand6pack on (February 23, 2014, 11:03 GMT)

Great declaration from Biff. The Australians may have a few promising patches during their 4th innings chase, but the pitch will start misbehaving and their frailties will be exposed.

Posted by disco_bob on (February 23, 2014, 11:02 GMT)

@Snambidi, I also thought it was a sporting declaration but on reflection I think it is a blunder born of thinking that it will rain tomorrow more than what it will, and he is probably still hurting from the criticism over not going for the win against India. This is looking very similar to Day one with the ball doing a little bit at first but then it will stop moving, difference is that the wicket looks to have dried out a bit and is not so sluggish. I think to have any chance of winning we need to be no more than 2 down with 210 on the board by end of play. Otherwise someone is going to have to do a Faf for us, maybe Marsh?

Posted by letsgoproteas on (February 23, 2014, 10:57 GMT)

TheBigBoodha - its a bonus that those 3 bowlers are the best 3 attack team in the world. HAAAAAAAAAAA! The track was only slow and flat for the Australian bowlers.

400+ runs is a very big ask from this Australian batting team. Their only chance is some big slog swatting from warner and dropped catches. They've done well to last the first 30 minutes.

PROTEAS!

Posted by TommytuckerSaffa on (February 23, 2014, 10:51 GMT)

Chris Rogers playing for his place in cape town. You can just see it. He knows Oz want Watson back, they don't really want to drop doolan or marsh and he is struggling for runs. Off to a good start tho.

Posted by   on (February 23, 2014, 10:46 GMT)

Well, lets hope there's no rain tomorrow. That'd surely mean a result! Given the start the Aussies have got, if Davey and Bucky can go on for at least a 100 runs, Aus can actually win the test with two sessions remaining! Excited to see what score they reach by stumps. 250-300 for 4? Would be the best chance for a win if it doesnt rain. A draw would be a huge setback for the Saffers. Lets hope for a genuine result. I'm saying 270-4 at stumps.

Posted by Snambidi on (February 23, 2014, 10:43 GMT)

A target of 448 in 2 full sessions& a Full day remaining in the match is a bit difficult in the Fourth Innings but never impossible. Captain Smith of SA deserves every piece of praise for such a sportingbDeclaration. In the recent times I have never seen such a generous declaration. So it is interesting to watch how Australia is going to perform accepting this Sporting Challenge from SA. CRICKET IS A GLORIOUS GAME OF UNCERTAINTY.ANYTHING IS POSSIBLE IN THIS TEST MATCH

Posted by disco_bob on (February 23, 2014, 10:39 GMT)

Well well, has Smith made a blunder playing for the weather? I think so, Warner and Rogers looking good on a good wicket. They will be coming back fresh after lunch and it will be as though they are chasing one less than the world record 418, with plenty of time. I doubt that we are going to lose more than an hour to rain tomorrow, maybe less. How much better do the Australians feel having Doolan in next rather than Marsh. South Africa also a bowler short. Tomorrow is the anniversary of the last time SA secured a series victory against Australia at the Wanderers. Might be a bit fraught.

Posted by Potatis on (February 23, 2014, 10:38 GMT)

Unfortunately it sounds like the rain tomorrow will rob Australia of a well earned victory.

Posted by Jagger on (February 23, 2014, 10:27 GMT)

Whenever I see this bloke I think of Dean Jones. Classic.

Posted by humi_cric on (February 23, 2014, 10:22 GMT)

I wonder whether other notice this funny thing that whenever Morne Morkel have a ball in his hand and on the bowling mark, someone shout "C'mon Morne", Like it very much.

Posted by TheBigBoodha on (February 23, 2014, 10:19 GMT)

SA basically have 3 1/2 bowlers and the track is still slow and flat. If Australia get through the new ball then SA are in for a hard slog. Let's hope one of the remaining bowlers does not go down, as that would pretty much spell doom for them. Australia have a small chance of winning on this track. I'm surprised Smith took the risk, especially given that the batsmen didn't show any real attempt to score rapidly.

Posted by   on (February 23, 2014, 10:14 GMT)

Well played Mighty Hash :)

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Andrew McGlashanClose
Andrew McGlashan Assistant Editor Andrew arrived at ESPNcricinfo via Manchester and Cape Town, after finding the assistant editor at a weak moment as he watched England's batting collapse in the Newlands Test. Andrew began his cricket writing as a freelance covering Lancashire during 2004 when they were relegated in the County Championship. In fact, they were top of the table when he began reporting on them but things went dramatically downhill. He likes to let people know that he is a supporter of county cricket, a fact his colleagues will testify to and bemoan in equal quantities.
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