Siddle fiver breaks South Africa’s back

January 5th, 2009 - 7:38 pm ICT by IANS  

Sydney, Jan 5 (IANS) Peter Siddle ran through the South Africa’s tail with his sheer pace on a disintegrating pitch to give Australia a decisive first innings lead and a clear chance of victory by stumps on the third day of the the third cricket Test here Monday.By the end of the day’s play, Australia have a 151 runs lead as Matthew Hayden and Simon Katich smashed five fours as they stroked their way to 33 runs in six overs to add to the 118-run first-innings lead.

South Africa’s only resistance came through Mark Boucher’s valiant 89 as they were bowled out for 327.

Siddle (5 for 59) was the star of the day as his late burst raised Australia’s hopes of pulling one back in the dead rubber and saving their precious Test cricket’s number one position. This was the former junior woodchopping champion’s third Test and his first five for.

South Africa, starting the day without their courageous captain Graeme Smith, out of the Test with a fracturing left-hand, lost quick wickets on resumption and could not build any partnership save the sixth-wicket stand between Boucher and fast bowler Morner Morkel (40).

Resuming at overnight 125 for one, in-form Jacques Kallis was out to a rash shot, chasing one way outside the off-stump from Mitchell Johnson to offer a catch to Matthew Hayden in the slips in the second over of the day.

Next man AB devilliers was run out going for a single as Johnson broke the stumps at the striker’s end with a sharp pick and throw from mid-on.

Hashim Amla was next to go, legbefore, to become debutant Andrew McDonald’s first Test victim.

The Australian attack stepped up the pressure and Jean-Paul Duminy, South Africa’s saviour in the first two Tests, could not do much as he fell to Johnson for 13 after facing 52 deliveries.

South Africa were tottering at 193 for five as crisis man Boucher dropped anchor to put on 115 runs with fast bowler Morkel to revive the inning somewhat.

The going was not smooth though for the pair as they survived some close calls, half-chances, and had lady luck smiling on them when the ball hit the wicket twice without the bails being dislodged.

Boucher was fortunate as he edged a Nathan Hauritz’s delivery onto the base of the leg- stump, but the bail went up and fell back into the groove.

Siddle got the vital breakthrough when he rattled Morkel’s stumps. From there on the fast bowler generated speed to mop up the tail. He bowled three batsmen and got the other two legbefore.

Paul Harris was trapped plumb in front, while Dale Steyn’s middle stump went for a toss. Boucher too was bowled by the Victorian, but before that the never-say-die wicketkeeper hit Hauritz for a six. Siddle’s last four wickets came off 22 deliveries.

Boucher said after the day’s play that Siddle’s speeds he never seemed to have dropped below 90mph right through the day. “He was hitting the splice of the bat and he is bound to create problems when he brings the ball back into the right-hander on a pitch like this.”

With axe dangling over his head, Matthew Hayden started on an explosive note, hitting Steyn for two consecutive fours. Katich joined in hitting two boundaries as Australia ended the day on a high.

Tags: , , , , , , , , ,

Posted in Sports |