Seven wickets to the star performer Mitchell Johnson to end the South African innings and three drop catches of David Warner, who went on to fire boundaries at will to get to his sixth Test century, on 26, 27 and 51, it's all going the Aussie way.
Australia fast bowler Mitchell Johnson celebrates the wicket of South Africa batsman Faf Du Plessis during the first Test, 13 February. Reuters
Where to Watch Live
The third day is scheduled for a 10.30 am local time (2 pm IST, 8.30 am GMT) start with live coverage on Ten Cricket and Ten HD in India. There is no official live streaming option available in the country, however. Viewers in South Africa and several other parts of the continent can live stream the match HERE, while UK viewers can catch the action live online HERE. Viewers in the US can catch the action via live streaming online HERE, while the match can be live streamed in Australia HERE.
Warner along with debutant Alex Doolan played a major part in taking Australia's lead to 397 from a first innings lead of 191 runs, with the duo piling up 205 runs for the second wicket. At stumps on day three, Australia were 288 for three, with Shaun Marsh (44) and Michael Clarke(17) looking composed in the middle.
Australia will look to make the Proteas count each ball as they target a big lead. South Africa is known for big scores in the fourth innings, and Australia would not want to risk setting a makeable target. Graeme Smith's men, on the other hand, will have to rework their strategy and hold on to their catches to begin with, before looking to restrict the opponents as much as possible.
Warner didn't hold back when asked to recall the last time he was given so many lives in a single inning, "probably backyard cricket," he replied. And as if that weren't enough, Philander missed a run out chance of Warner when he was on 106. "You are going to be a bit tired in the field, and it looked pretty lazy out there the way that they were fielding," Warner added.
The South African team physio and doctors also have a tough task tending to so many injured players in the team. Dale Steyn, JP Duminy and Morne Morkel are some of their leading players carrying niggles, which has in turn hampered South Africa further.
If South Africa are going to put up a fight, they have to do better than the first innings score of 206 and work out the Aussie pacers - especially that left-armer Johnson. Facing Johnson will be the deciding factor between the two sides.
"You can't show weakness," De Villiers said. "You've got to be prepared to get hurt. Once you don't have that fear of getting hurt, you can play him. Most of the time you get yourself out. He doesn't really bowl you a peach of a delivery, you get yourself out."
The primary factor in the second innings for South Africa will be the openers seeing off the new ball, and with it allowing the rest of the middle order to negotiate the Aussie bowlers comfortable enough.
De Villiers said that the batsmen need to get settled at the crease. "I felt comfortable from 35 overs onward," the wicketkeeper/batsman, who was the only one to show any sort of resolve with the bat in the first innings, said.
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