Australia used to be a force to reckon with when it came to playing in their own backyard but so far against South Africa, they’ve been tame. In the series opener at WACA, Australia lost a Test at home to open the summer for the first time since 1988.
And the trend of embarrassment continued at Hobart on the opening day with the Aussies bowled out for a meager 85 before the visitors put up 171/5 of their own. That gives them a lead of 86 runs early on and advantage is squarely in their hands.
Vernon Philander picked up his tenth five-for to topple Australia despite skipper Steve Smith’s battling 48 not out. Only Joe Mennie was the other with double digits.
In reply, South Africa withstood post lunch attack of Mitchell Starc which saw three wickets fall in quick manner before Hashim Amla steadied the innings but fell before he could show a half century for his efforts. At stumps, Temba Bavuma and Quiton de Kock stood in the middle eager to extend their advantage on the second day.
STUMPS! SOUTH AFRICA 171/5
End of an action packed day in Hobart.South Africa will be enjoying this 86 run lead over Australia. Veron Philander did the early damage by picking up those three wickets and Australia were bowled out for 85 as Philander picked up five wickets.
Starc got three early for Australia as well and Josh Hazlewood picked up two more to bring pack Australia back in this game
Quinton de Kock and Temba Bavuma moving South Africa nicely. This can well be the match defining stand for South Africa.
Fifty overs gone in Hobart and South Africa are now 160/5. They lead Australia by 75 runs now with 15 more minutes left in day’s play
Hashim Amla c Peter Nevill b Josh Hazlewood 47
Big wicket for Australia. Amla plays it a bit wide from his body. He gets the outside edge and is caught. South Africa 132/5
We all do Smith
I love Temba Bavuma, keep going big man!
— Graeme Smith (@GraemeSmith49) November 12, 2016
Fifty partnership up for Bavuma and Amla. This is the first 50-run stand of the match. Amla nearing his fifty as well. Bavuma been an excellent support
35 overs gone and South Africa are 96/4 in Hobart. Hashim Amla and Temba Bavuma the two batsmen for them. They lead by 11 runs
Temba Bavuma gets a single off the leg-byes and with that South Africa move into the lead. They are four down
Temba Bavuma and Hashim Amla are the two batsmen out there for South Africa. Their team needs a solid partnership here. Australia have 85 on the board and South Africa will take the lead
WICKET! Faf du Plessis LBW b Josh Hazlewood 7
Du Plessis has to go. Sharp seam back into Faf. He falls over after being hit on the pad. Umpire says out. Faf reviews. He is hit on the off-stump and it is crashing into leg-stump
End of 26th over and Steve Smith decides to replace Mitchell Starc with Mennie. Can continue with the same intensity as Starc? South Africa 65/3
JP Duminy c Smith b Starc 1 (4)
Starc is breathing fire! In the 147ks region, JP Duminy plays it on the line of delivery after pitching outside off and the drive attempt gets a nick behind to Smith at second slip. What a turnaround this has been for Australia. South Africa are 46/3
Stephen Cook c Nevill b Starc 23 (49)
That’s second in the over for Starc and what a start this is for Australia. Both set batsmen are into the pavillion in a space of five deliveries. It swings away from outside off and with no foot movement, touches it behind to the keeper. Poor choice of shot there. Australia are 44/2 and Hashim Amla and JP Duminy the new batsmen in
Dean Elgar lbw Starc 17 (61)
Just the start Australia would have wanted. First ball after Tea and Dean Elgar is trapped leg-before by Mitchell Starc. The yorker is on the mark and jags back into the leftie and he falls over trying to play it. Hits Elgar’s backpad and EagleEye shows it was taking the leg stump. Wise not to review. South Africa are 43/1
South Africa with their smart batting and good shot selection have remained unfazed by these conditions. At Tea, they are 43/0 with Dean Elgar on 17 and Stephen Cook on 23. Just before tea, Australia introduced spin with Nathan Lyon but nothing for him either – yet.
Looks like someone other than a South African is happy with the 85 all out.
Australia Bowled out for 85 … !!!!!!!!
— Michael Vaughan (@MichaelVaughan) November 12, 2016
And players are back out quickly. Stephen Cook and Dean Elgar to open for the Proteas and Mitchell Starc with the ball on one end and there’s Josh Hazlewood on the other. Should be fun!
Nearly 33 overs is all South Africa needed to dismiss this Australian side in the first innings (197 balls to be precise). The conditions are suitable for the seamers with cloudy skies and lights turned on. And Vernon Philander made the most of it for his 5-for. Just Mennie and Smith with scores in double figures – 10 and 48 respectively. Smith remained unbeaten as wickets fell regularly. Now on to Australia to make merry unless South Africa can remain resolute and patient under these testing conditions
Nathan Lyon c De Kock b Philander 2 (7)
And Australia are all out and fittingly its a blinder of a catch to bring curtains and even more fittingly the wicket goes to Philander. Full and outside off and Lyon sends an outside edge behind which is taken by a flying Quinton de Kock even as the first slip went for it. What a sensational catch
With that, Australia are bowled out for a disappointing 85 and Vernon Philander finishes with 5-21.
Hazlewood c Amla b Abbott 8 (7)
A good length delivery pitching on the off stump and without any feet movement, Hazlewood has a go at it but can only muster an edge behind to Amla at first slip who moves swiftly to his right to get both hands to it. The collapse happening in fast forward mode now. Australia are 76/9
Mitchell Starc c JP Duminy b Kyle Abbott 4 (6)
WOWZA! That has been literally plucked cms from the ground by Duminy. Pitched outside the off stump by Abbott and moved away just a smidge to get a thick edge before a flying JP sprung and caught it from his gully position. Beautiful piece of fielding!
Joe Mennie b Philander 10 (22)
Some balls after being reviewed not out off Kyle Abott, Mennie is bowled by Philander. Looks like the shoulder barge from earlier hasn’t hurt him much. Mennie goes on the defence with the front foot out and bit of a gap between bat and pad which is all that was needed for the ball to creep in and topple the stumps. Australia are 59/7
What a session to open play in Hobart for South Africa. They won the toss in cloudy conditions and have unleashed their fast bowlers on this not-so-consistent Australian batting. Helped by Vernon Philander’s 3-for, Australia were 31/6 at one stage for their second worst start in the first innings of a home Test. But the pre-lunch session also saw some moments of concern for the visitors who have had to see if they’re going to get Philander back after a shoulder issue upon colliding with Steve Smith. But with the ball getting older, Australia have finally settled down with Smith and Joe Mennie in the middle
South Africa ponder four-pronged pace assault for Hobart Test
The prospect of a rain-interrupted start to the Hobart Test has South Africa mulling a four-pronged pace assault to push for a series-sealing win over Australia when the match begins on Saturday.
South Africa routed the home side by 177 runs in Perth with just two fast bowlers and debutant spinner Keshav Maharaj after pace spearhead Dale Steyn was injured when bowling in Australia’s first innings.
Left-armer Maharaj took four wickets in a successful debut at the WACA but may be rested at Bellerive Oval as Faf du Plessis’ side bid for an unassailable 2-0 lead in the three-match series.
“There is a possibility of that,” Du Plessis told reporters in Hobart on Friday. “If it becomes a really shortened game … that’s something we will look at.
“It looks like there’s going to be a little bit of rain tomorrow, so if it rains for the whole day it becomes a four-day game. “The pitch is going to be under covers, the ball is going to be wet.”
Heavy rain is forecast for the opening two days of the Test, which could frustrate both sides’ hopes of victory.
South Africa have Morne Morkel and Kyle Abbott vying to replace Steyn, who suffered a fracture in his shoulder and could be out of the game for more than six months.
Towering seamer Morkel was left out of the Test in Perth as he recovers from a back injury that has sidelined him for two months and coach Russell Domingo said they would need to test his fitness again before making a call on the side for Hobart.
Du Plessis gave no clue which quick was favoured, but Abbott may have the edge for Hobart’s heavier wicket which could mean long spells for the pace bowlers.
“We’d like to see the conditions,” said Du Plessis.
“(Australia) are in the same boat as us. You just want to make sure you pick the strongest team for the conditions.”
Australia have also held off naming their starting side but Steve Smith earlier poured cold water on the notion of dropping regular spinner Nathan Lyon in a favour of unleashing four quicks.
“I’m not really sure that’s the way we’re thinking,” he told reporters.