Rabada stars with five-wicket haul as South Africa takes control

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Kagiso Rabada starred for South Africa with 5/96 as Australia were bowled out for 243, before the hosts reached 39/1 to trail by 204 in the first innings at the close of play on day one of the second Test in Port Elizabeth on Friday.

At 1-0 up in the four-match series, Australia won the toss and looked well-placed on a lively surface after David Warner and Cameron Bancroft put on 98 for the first wicket, and Steve Smith and Shaun Marsh a further 44 for the fourth.

Everything changed when Rabada returned to the attack. After bowling one over from the Duckpond End he switched to the Park Drive end and, starting with the key wicket of Smith, he ran through most of the Australian middle and lower order.

In all he took 5/36 in eight overs, but significantly he took his five wickets in the space of 18 balls for just 13 runs. At one stage he had 4/8 off seven balls and had the chance to take a hat-trick after dismissing Mitchell Marsh and Pat Cummins with successful balls.

It was Rabada’s eighth five-wicket haul in only his 28th Test match and his second against Australia.

He was well backed up by Vernon Philander and Lungi Ngidi, who was preferred to Morne Morkel in the only change to the Proteas side, who took the other 5 wickets between them.

This enabled the the hosts to take 5/72 in the second session and 4/73 in the final period of play. The only thing that will have disappointed them would have been the fact that the Australian tail was again able to wag to some extent with the last three wickets contributing the 73 runs that were scored after the tea interval.

Warner (63 off 100 balls, 9 fours) was the only Australian batsman to get past 50.

Rabada finished with 5/96 from 21 overs, Philander with 2/25 in 18 economical overs and Ngidi with 3/51.

For good measure Rabada also did well as night watchman to get his side through the final 20 minutes without further loss.