Australia took full control of the first Test against South Africa courtesy of Mitchell Johnson and David Warner's heroics at Centurion.
It was a chastening day for the world's top Test team, who first conceded a lead of 191 runs when they were dismissed for 206, and then fell away completely in the second innings as David Warner's 115 took the Baggy Greens to 288-3 at stumps, with a lead of 479 runs.
David Warner in Tests 1st inngs 1037 runs (ave 37.03) 100s: 2 2nd inngs 949* runs (ave 47.45) 100s: 3 #SAvAus— Mohandas Menon (@mohanstatsman) February 14, 2014
South Africa were humiliated, their focus slipping in the field, their use of the DRS clumsy and their hopes of saving the match now resting on two days of batting on a pitch which has seen some uneven bounce against the pace barrage of Johnson, Ryan Harris and Peter Siddle.
Resuming on 140-6 overnight, the Proteas lost wickets at regular intervals. Johnson removed Robin Peterson early on, one of seven wickets he picked up in the innings.
|South Africa 1st Innings||(Australia 397)|
|Smith||c S Marsh||b Johnson||10||8||8|
|Petersen||c Haddin||b Johnson||2||24||12|
|du Plessis||c Clarke||b Johnson||3||9||5|
|AB de Villiers||c Warner||b Johnson||91||234||148|
|Duminy||c Johnson||b Lyon||25||74||48|
|Peterson||c Clarke||b Johnson||10||23||23|
|M Morkel||c Haddin||b Johnson||0||5||1|
|Extras||1nb 1w 14b 2lb||18|
|Total||all out||206||(61.1 ovs)|
|Australia 2nd Innings (1st Inns 397)||SA 206|
|Warner||c Smith||b Peterson||115||204||151|
|Doolan||c AB de Villiers||b Duminy||89||242||154|
|S Marsh||not out||44||89||73|
|Extras||0nb 6w 3b 13lb||22|
|Total||for 3||288||(69.0 ovs)|
AB de Villiers was the lone batsman to resist Johnson and attack the rest of the bowlers. Confident and resolute, his 91 was all that stopped the day from being an unqualified embarrassment for his side.
In the end, he too fell to Johnson, trying to score quick runs and holing out to the fielder at mid off. With Johnson then accounting for Morne Morkel with his next delivery, the left-armer will go into the second innings on a hat-trick.
I have to say, I'm liking watching Mitchell Johnson tearing through the Saffers, without a doubt one of the finest sights in sport— Ben Dirs (@bendirs1) February 13, 2014
South Africa looked like they would mount a fightback when Dale Steyn removed Chris Rogers with his first ball of the morning, the left-hander dragging the ball back on to his stumps, but from there it was a desperate showing from the home side.
Warner, typically belligerent, offered chances, but they were spurned. Dean Elgar, the substitute fielder, dropped the worst of those when he was on 26, but Graeme Smith shelled another catchable opportunity in the slips.
Warner, meanwhile, continued to score at a pace, and 151-ball 115 put the game well beyond South Africa.
It looked as if Alex Doolan would follow him to the landmark for the first time, but he feathered an edge to the wicketkeeper off the bowling of JP Duminy when on 91.
Though he missed a debut Test 100, Australian Alex Doolan becomes the first batsman in Test history to make a score of 89 on debut #SavAus— Mohandas Menon (@mohanstatsman) February 14, 2014
By that time, however, the lead was long past 400, and there was still plenty of Australia batting in reserve to drive the advantage still further.
Peterson has taken to bowling everything outside leg stump. Umpire Illingworth has taken to calling wides. #SAvAUS— FOX SPORTS Cricket (@FOXCricketLive) February 14, 2014
Robin Peterson, portrayed a lack of confidence by bowling outside leg stump for much of the time he was called upon, while the seamers seemed to tire as the day wore on.
And with de Villiers struggling with a hand problem after a throw late in the day, just about the last reason for South African to cheer was wiped away.