Australia is six wickets away from wrapping up the series against South Africa on Day 4 of the Second Test at the MCG.
Australia declared with a lead of 386 runs on Day 3, giving the tourists a near impossible task of salvaging a result to keep the series alive heading into the Third Test in Sydney.
Watch Australia v South Africa. Every test match live and ad-break in play on Kayo. New to Kayo? Start your free trial now >
Alex Carey was the hero on Wednesday as he scored his maiden Test Century and Australia will be looking for another player to step up and bowl them to victory on Thursday.
The Aussies took three wickets in the first session to have South Africa 4/120 at lunch.
Scott Boland was at it again, trappling Kyle Verreynne lbw for 33 to take his second wicket.
Meanwhile Nathan Lyon is off the field after he landed heavily on his shoulder while attempting a diving catch.
South Africa toss another wicket away
Khaya Zondo was run out for just one run when Temba Bavuma called him through for a suicidal single.
Travis Head raced in and scooped up the Kookaburra before a diving underarm throw caught Zondo almost two meters outside the crease.
Bavuma had dropped the ball on the square with a soft-handed push, but with Zondo failing to back-up there was clearly never a run in it. It left South Africa 4/65.
“That’s a terrible run. It really is. There was half a single in it and Zondo had given up,” Mark Waugh said on Fox Cricket.
“I think that probably sums up their tour so far. Just mistake after mistake … There’s just no energy or game awareness.”
Furious Starc takes first scalp after DRS drama
Mitchell Starc has taken the first wicket on Day 4, trapping Sarel Erwee in front.
Australia had two wickets for 10 runs when Scott Boland struck shortly after.
Starc removed Erwee for 21, ending a solid partnership of 47 runs.
Starc pitched the ball up in the block hole and it struck Erwee in front. Umpire Paul Reiffel dismissed the appeals from the Aussies, but Pat Cummins referred the decision to the DRS after Nathan Lyon came in from point to suggest the ball struck Erwee’s toe before he got bat on it.
It took a side-on hot spot frame to show the ball had hit Erwee’s shoes before his bat.
It came after Starc had pulled up in the middle of his bowling action to warn Theunis de Bruyn for leaving his crease at the non striker’s end.
Starc stared de Bruyn down after the incident and then gave him some words.
Fox Cricket’s Isa Guha exclaimed at the time: “My word”.
Starc was heard saying: “Line’s there for a reason. Stay in your crease, it’s not that hard”.
He struck the next ball.
Minutes later Boland popped up to dismiss de Bruyn with a delivery that nipped up and resulted in a thick edge traveling to Steve Smith at second slip.
Starc was happy to make fun of de Bruyn when speaking to Fox Cricket during the next drinks break.
“He was half way down Punt Road wasn’t he. It’s bad enough in white ball cricket.,” he said.
“I was just letting him know if I can keep my foot behind the line he can keep his foot behind the line.”
Wife’s perfect sledge takes down Boxing Day hero
Alex Carey’s special moment has been capped off with a memorable interview given by wife Eloise at the MCG.
Carey became the second Aussie wicketkeeper to ever score a century at the MCG and it came from just 133 deliveries.
He was full emotion as he reached the milestone and Eloise revealed later his spell in the nervous nineties had the family feeling all the emotions.
“We had all the kids around waiting for it to happen and all the kids were saying, ‘Has he made his hundred yet?’. We thought they were going to jinx it,” she told Channel 7’s Greg Blewitt.
“Alex’s dad would not have been very happy.”
She also took light-hearted digs at her partner over his busy summer schedule and preparation for the Boxing Day Test.
“He could be doing more with the kids,” she said of his preparation when speaking to Triple M.
She also told Seven Carey’s summer schedule was a bit much for the family.
“We do as much (travelling) as we can,” she said.
“It can be a bit hard with the two kids because hotel living isn’t really conducive to keeping two kids happy and busy. But we do as much as we can because if we didn’t we’d never see Alex because he’s just so busy all the time.”
Classy reaction to Carey’s century
Cameron Green has further endeared himself to Australian cricket fans with a heartwarming celebration of Alex Carey’s maiden century during the second Test between Australia and South Africa.
On day three of the Boxing Day Test, Carey brought up his first Test century and while he celebrated the milestone modestly, his batting partner at the other end couldn’t have been happier for him.
After Carey struck a ball through the covers to bring up his ton, Green immediately raised his arms with delight as he ran between the wickets.
The classy touch didn’t go unnoticed by viewers, who said it was proof Green is the ultimate team man.
“Just keep an eye on Cam Green here, everyone needs a Cam Green to play sport with,” commentator Mark Howard said on Fox Cricket.
“I thought that was a fantastic representation of what that young man is all about.
“It’s a real warm embrace. And I’m sure that moment (his maiden century) is not too far away for him either.
“Five wickets in the first innings and he batted beautifully today under duress.”