Morkel takes 300th wicket to put Australia in trouble

Morkel takes 300th wicket to put Australia in trouble

The two teams are now locked at 1-1 in the four-Test series.

When a fired up Kagiso Rabada and explosive Australian opener David Warner clashed in a showdown for the ages at Newlands on Friday, it was as riveting as watching a nuclear bomb go off.

But it could have been worse for Australia.

"The runs at the end were vital in terms of the game, but the top order batting has got to improve". Smith became only the 11th fielder to claim five catches in a Test inning.

However the focus will once again be on the ICC match referee after the on-field umpires spoke to Cameron Bancroft about alleged ball tampering in the second session.

"It's a special feeling, especially as I'm the world record holder for the most (wickets denied by) no-balls", said Morkel, who took three of the first four Australian wickets to reach the milestone.

Morkel, at 34 years and 168 days, also became the fourth oldest pacer to 300 Test wickets. He finished with four for 87. "Unfortunately, there is a bit of alcohol and there's hot sun", Morne Morkel said.

Warner fired back. The pugnacious opener whacked three-consecutive boundaries and a six off Rabada as he raced to 30 in 13 balls.

The Aussies then got stuck in with the bat but it all went pear-shaped as the South African quicks lured the batsman into loose shot after loose shot.

But Warner appeared to react to a comment from a spectator in the members' pavilion, stopping and turning as he climbed the steps to the dressing room.

"Tim's probably been our stand-out batsman of the tour", Australia coach Darren Lehmann said. In a statement issued late on Friday night, acting Cricket South Africa chief executive Thabang Moroe said the events that happened earlier would not be tolerated. "You can have your banter, but they have gone too far here".

Certainly it resulted in a stink on the third day in Cape Town, where half-centuries from Aiden Markram and AB de Villiers pushed South Africa's lead towards 300 and rendered Australia's task for the remainder of this Test very hard indeed.

But Nathan Lyon (47) led a rally from the visitors as he frustrated the home side with his highest score in tests, adding 66 for the ninth wicket with Paine before he skied a Morkel delivery and was well caught by Elgar.

Elgar had earlier carried his bat for 141 (284 balls, 20 fours and a six) to join the West Indies Great, Desmond Haynes, as the only player to do this on three occasions.

It's far from a good situation to be in but better than Steve Smith could have hoped for when the Australians were 8-175, still 136 runs behind South Africa's first innings total of 311.

Although 10 other fielders share the record, Smith was only the second Australia player to achieve the feat after Vic Richardson in 1935-1936.



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