Proteas Still Maintain the No.1 in Tests
The third test of the series against Australia, South Africa won by a huge margin and Ricky’s farewell test match.
South Africa in Australia Test Series - 3rd Test. This test match had a huge expectation with Ricky Ponting announcing his retirement and Aussies wanted to win this match for him. South Africa won the toss and decided to bat, the Aussies were brilliant in their bowling attack and the Proteas certainly struggled to score runs with every batsmen failing to score and losing their wicket. Faf du Plessis was the find of the series for South Africa as he rescued his team and saw the team scoring 225 in their first innings and faf was the top scorer who made a patient 78 and was un beaten. When the Aussies came into bat, that proved to be a tough fight with Dale Styen and Morkel coming into the attack, Australian openers went without making a big impact and the middle order did not provide much support as well and the Aussies were bundled for 163, with Steyn picking up 4 wickets and petersen picking up 3, were the pick of the bowlers for South Africa.
South Africa in their second Innings batted brilliantly, losing petersen early, it was Amla and Smith involving in a 178 run partnership proved too costly for the home team, smith made a quick fire 84 of 100 balls before being dismissed by starc for a short ball. Amla was a treat to watch, showing his class once again and proving his worth scored runs quickly along with Kallis at the other end, Kallis playing on with an injury fear got out for 37, this was the time when AB.D joined amla, in the mean time Amla scored another century and continued his good form in test cricket. Australians found so hard to take the wicket of Amla ,the duo added 149, before amla being dismissed 4 runs short of a double century. AB too got this ton once amla lost his wicket, AB making a match winning 169 was the another highlight of the match. The visitors took a massive lead and the target was 632 with two days remaining.
Australians coming into chase the massive target of 632 struggled a bit right from the beginning. Cowan made a patient 53 and Clarke’s 44 and Starc's 68 were the biggest contribution while the rest failed to make big scores. Most importantly this was Ponting’s last match and he did receive the Guard of Honor from the visitors and a huge standing ovation from the crowd. Ponting scored only 8 runs in his final test and the Aussies managed to score 322 and the visitors won the match in big margin and maintained their top spot in the test cricket.
The legend Ponting’s last match, and he has been so successful as a captain and his record as a captain were too good. The cricketing world and the Australians will certainly miss his presence in the dressing room! Wishing Ponting “Punter” all the good luck for his future.