Harris bowls Proteas to victory

Johnson fireworks fail to save Australia

Last Updated: 23/03/09 12:31pm

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Harris: match figures of 9-161

Harris: match figures of 9-161

Sky Bet

Third Test
Cape Town
Australia 209 (S M Katich 55, D W Steyn 4-56) & 422 (M G Johnson 123 no, A B McDonald 68, S M Katich 54, P L Harris 6-127) v South Africa 651 (A B de Villiers 163, A G Prince 150, J H Kallis 102, J A Morkel 58, M G Johnson 4-148)
South Africa beat Australia by an innings and 20 runs

Paul Harris claimed six wickets as South Africa completed victory over Australia by an innings and 20 runs on the fourth evening of the third Test at Newlands.

Australia started the penultimate day on 102-2 in their second innings, still 340 behind after South Africa's mammoth first-innings effort of 651.

The tourists managed to delay the moment of defeat until deep into the final session as Mitchell Johnson led a spirited lower order rearguard.

Johnson, batting at number eight, was left stranded on 123 not out - his maiden first-class century - as Australia were finally all out for 422.

The Queenslander reached three figures from just 86 balls with the fourth of his five sixes and had earlier shared a 163-run, seventh-wicket stand with Andrew McDonald to raise the visitors' hopes of making South Africa bat again.

But left-arm spinner Harris had McDonald (68) caught via bat-and-pad before running through the lower order to seal a result that reduces South Africa's margin of defeat in the series to 2-1.

Patience

It was a game of patience from the start with Australia taking until the sixth over of the day for their first run, which came courtesy of a fine cover drive by Michael Hussey off Makhaya Ntini (0-66) for four.

Simon Katich had a let off in reopening his account - Dale Steyn sent in a full delivery outside off stump that was chased by the left-hander with the ball flying straight to Harris, who failed to hold on to a simple chance in the gully.

The New South Welshman brought up his half-century by walking across his stumps and swatting Albie Morkel (0-88) down to the fine leg boundary for four.

But he was out not long after, hitting a wide and tossed up delivery off Harris straight to JP Duminy at mid-off to end a dogged 159-ball effort for 54.

There was still time for another scare for the tourists before lunch, which came in the final over before the interval when Michael Clarke was given out caught behind by umpire Steve Bucknor.

Wicketkeeper Mark Boucher took a simple catch, but the batsman referred the decision on the grounds that he failed to get an edge on the Jacques Kallis (0-21) delivery and replays revealed he was correct.

Australia's survival battle was further derailed when paceman Steyn struck at both ends of the afternoon session.

Steyn removals

Steyn (3-96), operating at close to 90mph throughout the day, removed Hussey for 39 in his second over after lunch and then intervened again in his penultimate over before tea when he dismissed Clarke for 47 to reduce Australia to 218-6.

Brad Haddin was the other man to go in the middle session, holing out to a back pedalling Duminy at mid-on off Harris' bowling for 18.

But the innings was revived as Johnson and McDonald clobbered 163 off just 161 balls during an entertaining stand.

Just as it looked as if the pair would extend the match into the final day, Harris pounced to get rid of McDonald for 68.

And despite Johnson continuing to punish all-comers at the other end, Harris removed Peter Siddle (0) and Ben Hilfenhaus (12) either side of Bryce McGain's (0) run out to complete figures of 6-127 and get the celebrations started in Cape Town.

The match also marked the final appearance of umpire Bucknor. The Jamaican official has decided to hang up his coat after a career spanning 128 Tests and 179 one-day internationals.

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