08 Jan FIGHTING PROTEAS EARN THIRD TEST DRAW IN SYDNEY
SYDNEY: The Proteas produced their best batting display of their tour to Australia on the last day of the trip by fighting out the final day of the third Test to secure a draw at the SCG in Sydney on Sunday.
Simon Harmer, Keshav Maharaj, Sarel Erwee and Heinrich Klaasen all took important time out of the contest with useful contributions as the tourists first posted 255 in their first innings and then reached 106 for two when time was called during the follow-on innings late on the fifth afternoon. It means they scored an aggregate of 212 for the loss of six wickets on the fifth day – with their first-innings 255 also representing the highest total South Africa had recorded in their previous eight innings.
Having already lost the series 2-0 and with only pride to play for, the brittle batting of the visitors had entered the final day with plenty of focus on them as they aimed to survive against the dangerous home attack. Rain had taken out nearly two days out of the Test match with the Proteas resuming the fifth morning on 149 for six in their first innings replying to the Australians’ 475 for four declared. Marco Jansen fell early for a defiant 11 when he edged Travis Head (1/21) behind to Alex Carey after facing 78 balls.
Then came the key stand between Harmer and Maharaj as they frustrated the hosts with an eight-wicket partnership that was worth 85. The pair batted together for more than 26 overs with the former going on to 165 balls for his 47 and the latter posting a 53 off 81 balls (6 fours, 1 six), his fifth Test match 50.
Once the partnership was broken by Josh Hazlewood (4/48), the South African tail collapsed and they were bowled out in 108 overs, 24 runs short of avoiding the follow-on, which Australia enforced.
It was a credible effort by the touring side at that stage, but there were still 47 overs to negotiate in order to escape with something from the game. They again found themselves in trouble early on when captain Dean Elgar was caught down the leg side off opposite number Pat Cummins (1/16) for 10 to complete a forgettable tour. That was in the ninth over, with Erwee (42 not out off 125 balls) and Klaasen then digging in for nearly 20 overs to further dent the series whitewash hopes of the home side. The latter was eventually bowled for 35 by Hazlewood (1/9), but the former together with Temba Bavuma (17 not out off 42 balls) batted out the next 14.5 overs to seal the draw for South Africa.
Proteas Test squad against Australia
Dean Elgar (captain, Momentum Multiply Titans), Temba Bavuma (DP World Lions), Gerald Coetzee (ITEC Knights), Sarel Erwee (Hollywoodbets Dolphins), Simon Harmer (Momentum Multiply Titans), Marco Jansen (Dafabet Warriors), Heinrich Klaasen (Momentum Multiply Titans), Keshav Maharaj (Hollywoodbets Dolphins), Lungi Ngidi (Momentum Multiply Titans), Anrich Nortje (Dafabet Warriors), Kagiso Rabada (DP World Lions), Rassie van der Dussen (DP World Lions), Kyle Verreynne (wicketkeeper, Six Gun Grill Western Province), Lizaad Williams (Momentum Multiply Titans), Khaya Zondo (Hollywoodbets Dolphins).
South Africa Test Tour to Australia Itinerary
Four-Day Tour Match
09 – 12 December
Cricket Australia XI drew with South Africa – The Allan Border Field, Brisbane
17 – 21 December
Australia beat South Africa by six wickets – The Gabba, Brisbane
26 – 30 December
Australia beat South Africa by an innings and 182 runs – MCG, Melbourne
04 – 08 January
Australia drew with South Africa – SCG, Sydney
Issued by: Cricket South Africa – Corporate Communications
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