Australia dominate in first test as South Africa battled for a draw




For team that boasted the best bowling line up, South Africa should thank the rain on Sunday for ruining a definite result. South Africa began the first day living upto the reputation they built in the recent past.

Australian skipper Michael Clarke was named the man-of-the-match for his third double-century of the year

Australian skipper Michael Clarke was named the man-of-the-match for his third double-century of the year

Australia will be high on confidence ahead of the second test specially their captain Michael Clarke who led by example with a brilliant knock and a timely one.

The South African batsmen were left searching for answers on the final day after being tested to the limits by the likes of Peter Siddle and James Pattison. Pattison was aggressive throughout the final day. Pattison dismissed both the South African openers cheaply on the final day.

The major talking point of the match was how Clarke, Ed Cowan and Hussey played the South African bowlers as if they were playing against some school team. When Australia were 3 down for just 40 runs nobody would have expected them to bounce their way back into the match in an emphatic fashion. Clarke scored 259 of 398 balls; his innings was characterized by some drives and shots over heaving shots with power. The Australian skipper was unbeaten and had reached his highest individual score in test cricket. Ed Cowan scored 136 before he was run out by Steyn. Hussey chipped in with a quick fire 100 of just 129 balls to give the hosts a good lead of 115 before they sent the Proteas out to bat.

The only time South Africa looked like in the driver’s seat was when they scored 26 of a Lyon over. The spinner came back strongly to pick up the very important wicket of Kallis and then later Rudolph.

The pitch had shown signs of deterioration when Australia were batting. Morkel trouble Clarke a bit with his bounce and pace and then eventually got Hussey. That was the first wicket to a bowler after 120 overs.

Pattison found the same rhythm and drew Peterson into a drive to be caught behind. Amla had dragged Pattison on to the stumps but a referral showed that it was a no ball and saved him. Smith got some lives in between as he nicked Siddle just short of the slips.

Pattison grew agitated as he there were ill tempered duels between him and Smith owing to various incidents and then he got even more frustrated when a referral ruled out his wicket. Pattison eventually got his man when he dismissed Smith. Australia were at the wrong end of another referral and this time it was Hilfenhaus and Kallis.

De Villiers and Kallis held on for an hour to frustrate the Australians before Lyon returned to get rid of Kallis. Lyon eventually dismissed Rudolph also but Australia were left short on time as they pushed for victory. But they have won a moral battle and will be much better going into the next match.

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