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Rabu, 28 Desember 2022

Australia v South Africa: Alex Carey century keeps hosts in charge in Melbourne


Carey is the first Australian wicketkeeper to make a Test century since Brad Haddin in 2013

Second Test, Melbourne Cricket Ground (day three of five)
South Africa 189, 15-1
Australia 575-8dec: Warner 200, Carey 111; Nortje 3-92
South Africa trail Australia by 371 runs with 9 wickets remaining

Wicketkeeper Alex Carey scored a maiden century as Australia closed in on a series-sealing win over South Africa on day three of the second Test.

The hosts racked up 575-8 in their first-innings reply to South Africa's 189 before declaring and switching the spotlight on the Proteas.

The call was justified as South Africa skipper Dean Elgar was caught for a duck and his side fell to 15-1.

Play was abandoned early as drizzle hit the Melbourne Cricket Ground.

It ended as another dismal day for the tourists, but it had begun in promising fashion with a string of wickets in the morning session.

Fast bowler Anrich Nortje dismissed Travis Head for 51 before cleaning up David Warner with a superb yorker as the Australian, who resumed on 200 after retiring with cramp on day two, was out to the first ball he faced on day three.

Pat Cummins saw off the hat-trick ball but was soon caught behind off Kagiso Rabada for four.

South Africa had taken three wickets for five runs, to leave Australia, who had started the day on 386 for three, on 400 for six.

But Australia found a first-innings second wind when Nathan Lyon joined Carey at the crease. Lyon hit a plucky 25 before all-rounder Cameron Green made light of a broken index finger sustained on day two to score an unbeaten 51.

Green's injury will keep him out of the bowling attack for the rest of the match and he will miss the third Test in Sydney. He took 5-27 in South Africa's first innings.

Carey, playing in his 14th Test, motored along, reaching 111 before he was caught and bowled by Marco Jansen.

Carey is the first Australian wicketkeeper to make a Test century since Brad Haddin in 2013 and only the second at the Melbourne Cricket Ground after Rod Marsh.

In their second knock, South Africa were quickly in trouble. Elgar's duck off the bowling of Cummins means the visiting captain has scored only 31 runs in four innings on the tour.

It could have been worse for South Africa because Theunis de Bruyn was dropped by Warner on three. Instead, he survives on six not out alongside opener Sarel Erwee on seven.

However, Australia, who lead by 371 runs, control the match's destiny with two days left to collect the nine remaining wickets.

Australia lead the three-match series 1-0 after a six-wicket win in the first Test in Brisbane.


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