Johannesburg, Nov 19: As it looked like Aussies are going to dominate the test, a magical spell from Dale Steyn saw South Africa pounce back as they restricted Aussies to 296 at stumps on Day 2 of the second test at Wanderers, Johannesburg.
After a bad start, they doubled the effort by bowling out the Aussies to 296 after the openers fell when the score read 192/2. Phil Hughes and Shane Watson both scored 88 as they put 174 runs for the first wicket.
After Hughes' wicket, wickets started tumbling as they lost 9 wickets for 122 runs. Philander gave the much need breakthrough for South Africa as he picked the pricey wicket of Phil Hughes who fell 12 runs short of his fourth Test century.
Soon after Hughes' dismissal, within a span of 10 overs, Shane Watson followed suit holing it out to Tahir off Kallis for 88.
South Africa heaved a sign of relief as the two openers were dismissed 12 runs short of their centuries as wickets started to tumble without much effort of the bowlers.
South Africa ran out of luck earlier as Hughes survived two chances while he was on 30 and 38 helping him score his third half century in Tests. Shane Watson and Hughes, were very aggressive and powerful as they played through the innings that led to a 174-run stand for the first wicket, infact a fifth century stand for an Australian opening pair.
Ricky Ponting's poor form continued as he got out for a duck after being trapped leg before the wicket by the most dangerous Dale Steyn. With his continuing bad form, he might have to face a lot of consequences in the near future as his place is at stake.
Similar to Ponting, Brad Haddin, whose place is also at stake, continued his poor form as he struggled to play and was dismissed by Imran Tahir for 16.
With both the seniors not finding form, call for their heads have already created a buzz amongst cricket fans and the cricketers themselves. The only centurion and the saving grace of the first test match, skipper Michael Clarke got out for 11 as the Aussies had no one to rely upon. Mitchell Johnson, another player on the verge to be dropped due to bad form, played decently well to score 38 runs and remained unbeaten as wickets tumbled at the other end.
South Africa's Dale Steyn was very impressive with his 4/64 while the youngster Imran Tahir was no different as he grabbed 3/55 to help the hosts restrict Aussies to 296 after a great start.
Earlier, South Africa elected to bat, after winning the toss scored 266 in its first innings. Riding high on half centuries by three batsmen -Kallis, AB deVilliers and AG Prince. Australia's Peter Siddle picked up three wickets while Clarke and Lyon grabbed two each. Others got a wicket each.
Even after a huge collapse, Aussies managed to get a 30 run lead as they plan to restrict the hosts to a small score and eye to win to register a comeback. Meanwhile, South Africa is also eager to finish on a high as they are planning to seal the series at Wanderers as they have not won a series at home since 1969-70. It all depends on South Africa's second innings as they are about to start their second innings soon on Saturday after playing just 4 balls before stumps on Day 2.