Wellington, Dec 01(ANI): South Africa breathed fire on day two of the third Test against Australia in Perth, as with everything on the line, the host collapsed meekly with the bat and floundered badly with the ball on a disastrous day at the WACA.
It was a swift and humiliating turnaround in the match, given Australia had bowled their opponents out for just 225 in the first innings on day one, Stuff.co.nz reports.
South Africa was 2-230 at stumps from 38 overs, with a commanding 292-run lead and Hashim Amla (99 off 84 balls) and Jacques Kallis (17) unbeaten at the crease.
Spearhead Dale Steyn (4-40) starred with the ball before Graeme Smith and Amla took the match from Australia with a thundering 178-run partnership from 153 balls.
Smith (84 from 100) and Amla scored at nearly seven an over and at one point were on track to post the best run-rate ever recorded in a century-partnership. It was the third-fastest 150-partnership of all time.
The veteran pair smashed Mitchell Johnson (1-35), Mitchell Starc (1-76), Shane Watson (0-17), John Hastings (0-47) and Nathan Lyon (0-38) to every corner of the WACA.
Smith was eventually sent packing by Starc after an extraordinary full-stretch diving catch from Lyon in the deep - but Lyon dropped his head shortly after in another Starc over when he put down Kallis.
South Africa went to another level and ensured Australia must produce a special performance if they're to push the Proteas off top spot in the Test standings and give Ponting a fairytale.
The record for the highest fourth-innings chase at the WACA was ironically the Proteas hunting down 4-414 to beat Australia in 2008. (ANI)