South Africa vs. Australia, 1st Test: Day 1 Video Highlights, Scorecard, Report

Lee WalkerUK Managing EditorFebruary 12, 2014

Australia's batsman Shaun Marsh plays a side shot on the first day of their cricket test match against South Africa at Centurion Park in Pretoria, South Africa, Wednesday, Feb. 12, 2014. (AP Photo/Themba Hadebe)
Themba Hadebe/Associated Press

Shaun Marsh hit a century as Australia made a strong recovery on Day 1 of the first Test against South Africa at Centurion.

Marsh, who only arrived in Johannesburg on Sunday after Shane Watson was ruled out by a calf problem, made 122 not out in his first Test since January 2012.

He shared an unbroken 199-run partnership for the fifth wicket with Steve Smith as the tourists recovered from 98-4 to finish the day on 297-4.

Australia 1st Innings: 297 for 4 (90 overs)
Rogers c Duminy b M Morkel 4 37 19
Warner b Steyn 12 17 16
Doolan c Peterson b McLaren 27 86 51
S Marsh not out 122 339 232
Clarke c Philander b Steyn 23 43 45
Smith not out 91 227 178
Extras 1nb 6w 4b 7lb 18
Steyn20 4 54 2
Philander16 2 55 0
M Morkel18 5 56 1
McLaren16 4 53 1
Peterson10 0 34 0
Duminy10 1 34 0

Things had not started well for Michael Clarke's men after South Africa won the toss and elected to field.

David Warner went in the fifth over for 12 after dragging a wide delivery from Dale Steyn onto his own stumps.

Fellow opener Chris Rogers soon joined him in the pavilion after Morne Morkel's short delivery was gloved to short leg, where JP Duminy flung himself forward to snare the catch.

He departed for four and Australia went to lunch on 83/3 after debutant Alex Doolan departed for 27, pulling Ryan McLaren to Alviro Petersen at mid-wicket.

Skipper Clarke fell shortly after the adjournment, caught at deep fine leg by Vernon Philander for 26 after an attempted hook by Steyn.

However Marsh, who was dropped on 12 by Hashim Amla in the gully off Morkel, reached his half-century off 101 balls and Australia went to tea on 176-4.

The 30-year-old marched on in the final session and nudged Duminy through square to bring up his second Test century, following his maiden ton on debut against Sri Lanka in 2011.

Smith is also on the brink of a ton, reaching 91 at the close and like Marsh hitting 12 boundaries.

The three-match series has been billed as a battle of the world's top Test teams after Australia demolished England 5-0 in the Ashes, although the Baggy Greens are still below second-placed India in the ICC rankings.