Australia clinch series win over South Africa
by Cricketarchive Staff Reporter

Scorecard:South Africa v Australia
Player:PM Siddle, JH Kallis, SM Katich
Event:Australia in South Africa 2008/09

DateLine: 11th March 2009


Australia clinched a series win over South Africa and remained top of the world rankings after completing a crushing 175-run victory in the second Test. South Africa resumed on 244 for two, chasing an unlikely victory target of 546 to square the series 1-1.


The day began inauspiciously, with Michael Clarke turfing Jacques Kallis to a straightforward chance at point. The reprieve was Kallis' second from the bowling of Siddle - the first coming from the first ball he faced on Monday - and prompted dejected looks among the Australians. Johnson, though, ensured the mistake would not fester, removing the South African allrounder in the next over with a shorter, angling delivery that deflected off the outside edge and came to rest in the sure hands of Ponting at second slip. Siddle was soon rewarded for his persistence with the wicket of the dangerous AB de Villiers, effectively terminating the South African resistance. This match could well have been Siddle's finest on the international stage, and his delivery to de Villiers - fast, angling in, seaming away and shaving the edge - was from the very top shelf. South Africa were 279 for 4 midway through the session, and fighting for survival.


The hosts benefited from another reprieve when the luckless Siddle watched forlornly as Brad Haddin spilled JP Duminy diving to his left. But, again, reinforcements were close at hand, and Ben Hilfenhaus promptly accounted for him with a short, sharp delivery that deflected from the gloves and flew to Haddin, no doubt grateful for his chance at redemption. The initial in-roads made by the pacemen, it was left to Australia's makeshift spin attack to close out the innings. Katich removed Paul Harris on the stroke of lunch, and Marcus North dismissed the dogged Mark Boucher in the ensuring session to place Australia within sight of victory. Katich returned for the wickets of Morne Morkel and Steyn, and a famous Australian triumph was sealed.



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