A Quinton de Kock ton lifted the Proteas to 326, before Kyle Abbott struck in the first over to leave Australia on 54-1 in their second innings on day three of the second Test in Hobart on Monday.
De Kock headlined the Proteas innings, as he scored an excellent 104 just before lunch – the second Test century of his career. However, when he lost his wicket there was a complete collapse, with the last four wickets falling for 34 runs.
With the daunting prospect of needing to post a big enough total to make the Proteas work for a chase, the Aussies lost a wicket with the fourth ball of the innings, just like they did in their first innings.
Burns, who got one first time around, fell for a duck this time in slightly unfortunate circumstances, as a Proteas review revealed he feathered one down the leg side to De Kock.
After a brief rain delay, David Warner played in typically positive fashion as he cruised to 29 by tea, with Usman Khawaja there on 24. Abbott could have had a second in the last over of the session as the ball flew to Dean Elgar at third slip, only for Elgar to evasively duck under it.
The pitch still looks decent to bat on, but it is starting to offer a bit of help to the seam bowlers with the new ball, highlighted by the fact that Josh Hazlewood picked up brilliant figures of 6-89 in the Proteas’ first innings.
Temba Bavuma popped one up straight after the break to fall for a solid 74 for Joe Mennie’s first wicket in Test cricket, before Keshav Maharaj was bowled from a beauty by Hazlewood.
Vernon Philander upped the tempo after Kyle Abbott was trapped lbw for three, smashing six boundaries that looked very easy on the eye. Eventually his aggressiveness got the better of him, feathering one behind to fall for 32 and signalling the end of the innings.
Time will tell whether the Proteas have done enough damage, as De Kock and Bavuma put together 144 – a record sixth-wicket stand for South Africa in Australia. The hosts’ top order will need to step up in a big way if they want to claw their way back into this contest.
Photo: Saeed Khan/Getty Images
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