Australia's Alex Doolan, right, jumps onto bowler Mitchell Johnson, left, after taking a catch on the fourth day of their cricket test match against South Africa at Centurion Park in Pretoria, South Africa, Saturday, Feb. 15, 2014.
Australia's Alex Doolan, right, jumps onto bowler Mitchell Johnson, left, after taking a catch on the fourth day of their cricket test match against South Africa at Centurion Park in Pretoria, South Africa, Saturday, Feb. 15, 2014. AP Photo - Themba Hadebe

Australia takes screaming victory over number-one test team

THE incomparable fast-bowling of Mitch Johnson has inspired Australia to a 281-run thrashing of the world's number-one Test team, South Africa, on its own turf.

The result, South Africa's worst loss at home for almost 60 years, gave Australia a one-nil lead in the three-Test series.

Johnson was at his menacing best to push the Proteas to the brink of defeat, taking five second-innings wickets to lift his match tally to a career-best 12-127. Two of those snared on Saturday were thanks to the brilliance of debutant Alex Doolan fielding at short-leg.

The result at Centurion Park was sealed by Nathan Lyon's run-out of Morne Morkel that dismissed the home team for 200 from 59.4 overs, nowhere near the Test-record 482 it needed to win the match or the 174 overs it needed to face to escape with a draw.

Vice-captain A.B. de Villiers again stood tall in the South African batting line-up, top-scoring with 48, yet when he fell to a combination of Johnson's bowling and Steve Smith's sure hands at short cover it extinguished the very, very faint possibility the result would be anything other than a win to Australia.

Read more at Brisbanetimes.com.au


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