Australia claim big lead as Starc rips through S


Australian batsmen have carved out a decent lead on day three of the first Test against South Africa in Durban, but several wickets came from self-inflicted brain fades.

In fact, both captain Faf du Plessis and coach Ottis Gibson glossed over de Kock's lean patch and publically stated de Kock was safe.

South Africa have determined and inwardly-tough cricketers, no doubt, but a number of them appear generally quiet mild-mannered individuals and you wouldn't want any forced aggression that they wouldn't be comfortable with.

The batting of the lower order of the teams was a significant difference.

The 28-year-old's 5-34 has left Australia with a comfortably first-innings lead of 189 runs - thanks, in no small part, to Starc's ability with both ball and bat.

"He showed what he can do when the ball starts to reverse-swing", Paine said.

In Dale Steyn's absence‚ can Kagiso Rabada swing it as late and consistently as Starc?

Probably the most remarkable statistic of the fourth day was Nathan Lyon's failure to take a wicket although it didn't matter as Starc and his seam bowling comrades did the job.

"Well, he gets a chance tomorrow now", Australia wicketkeeper Tim Paine said with the teams due to return for a fifth day at Kingsmead that could potentially last just one ball.

"I wouldn't say they were starting to get away from us, they were playing very well, but we knew we had a new ball around the corner and we know what our attack can do when we start to get it at the tail".

The century was Markram's third in seven Tests that have also featured two scores in the 90s, announcing himself emphatically on the global scene against an Australian bowling attack rated the best in the world.

As the two super power teams in cricket Australia and South Africa started their challenge in 1st March, 2018 and the first match was hosted at the stadium of Durban.

South Africa were poor in the opening innings but put up a good fight in the second, where they were set a mammoth 417-run chase and fleetingly looked capable of achieving it before their resistance crumbled. "The tail is going to have to scrap, and the top seven or eight batters will have to take responsibility", du Plessis said. Batsman Aiden Makaram scored faboulas Hundred and guided South Africa to score 298 in the second innings. Captain Steve Smith also gave his contribution of 56 runs in the first innings. They have won the last Ashes series against England and later, won Trans Tasman Tri Series against New Zealand and England.

Markram was at the centre of some animated flashpoints out in the middle, as Australia's explosive recent history with South Africa bubbled to the surface. It was Markram's third Test century. The run-out between him and AB would have been weighing on his mind. In particular, it will please the seniors, because they own failings have only made South Africa's job harder; now can see there are others who can bear the load.

Privy to the third day action of that match from their exalted accommodation in a private suite of the Newlands Cricket Grounds President's Pavilion were the blazer-clad members of South Africa's under-19 squad who had, two days earlier, triumphed in the final of ICC's prestigious junior World Cup. "I'm really proud of the character".

Entering the series in South Africa, it was a bit of all or nothing for Bancroft and unfortunately, his first innings went by the wayside.

"It was just reminding him of what he had just done, trying to get him off his game, the same as they do to us".