South Africa Vs Australia 3rd Test, Australia succumb to 322 runs defeat amidst ball-tampering controversy, Morkel takes five, While the Cameron Bancroft- Steve Smith ball tampering issue is taking the cricketing world by storm, South Africa routed Australia on day four of the Port Elizabeth Test to go 2-1 in the series.
Half-centuries from Aiden Markram, AB de Villiers, Quinton de Kock and Vernon Philander enabled South Africa to post 373 runs in the second innings and then Australia folded out for mere 2017 runs with all ten wickets falling in the span of 50 runs courtesy of Morne Morkel’s brilliant spell of five wickets for 23 runs.
Australia started the fourth day with 294 runs behind South Africa and a new captain in the form of Tim Paine as Steve Smith and David Warner stood down from captaincy vice-captaincy because of their role in ball tampering issue.
The day on the field started well for the visitors as Josh Hazlewood produced the big wicket of ABD in the 11th over of the day. ABD scored his 63 runs and brought up his second fifty-plus score of this Test.
But then de Kock and Philander frustrated Australia with a 55 run partnership. Pat Cummins broke this standby sending back de Kock for a fine inning of 65 runs. Philander tagged with tailenders and batted Australia out of the game. Philander stood not out on 52 as South Africa’s second innings folded for 373 runs. Hazlewood, Cummins and Nathan Lyon took three wickets each.
Chasing a massive target of 430 runs, Australia got off to a solid start with Cameron Bancroft and Warner adding 57 runs for the first wicket. A brilliant fielding effort by du Plessis in the 21st over brought curtains on Bancroft’s innings of 26 runs and Rabada sent back Warner for 32 runs.
Since then Morkel routed the visitors with his inspired bowling spell. The pace bowler got rid of Australia’s lower middle order and tailenders to trigger off a sensational batting collapse as the visitors lost ten wickets for 50 runs.
Keshav Maharaj picked two wickets to give able support to Morkel who is set to retire from international cricket after the next Test.