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Quinton de Kock struck a 143-ball 104 Getty Images

After a wash-out on Day Two, Day Three witnessed exciting cricket, where both bat and ball held their own in the clash of the titans. South Africa continued to ride on their terrific Day One show, while Australia strived that much harder to make a comeback of sorts. With a slender lead of 89-runs, Temba Bavuma and Quinton de Kock rose to the occasion and cashed in on Australia’s lazy and ineffective bowling to help their team to a mammoth 241-run lead. De Kock was the star with the bat for the visitors, while Josh Hazlewood provided some much needed happiness in the home teams’ camp. In reply, Australia were more responsible and resilient with Usman Khawaja, David Warner proving a steady start to their team. Going into Day Four, Australia still trail South Africa by 120 runs with Khawaja and Steven Smith out in the middle for them. FULL CRICKET SCORECARD: Australia vs South Africa, 2nd Test at Hobart

Quinton de Kock‘s second Test ton: De Kock, who narrowly missed out on a well deserved hundred at Perth, was on a pathway to redeem himself at Hobart. He had the perfect platform to launch an attack on the Australian bowlers on Day One and he did exactly that. On Day One, the southpaw was aggressive than what one witnessed on Day Three. Come Day Three, de Kock started slowly, and was looking in pain. Notwithstanding any pain barrier, he went past it and got into his element soon.

With South Africa already having a 150+ lead, de Kock went hammer and tong over Australian bowlers, especially Nathan Lyon, who was fancied by the 23-year-old lad. De Kock brought up his second Test ton in 139 balls to gain a standing ovation from his teammates in the dressing room. His onslaught gave South Africa a sniff at victory.

Josh Hazlewood‘s sharp 6-for: Hazlewood looked the most impressive of the bowlers from the Australian attack on Day One after picking 2-crucial wickets very late in the day. Hazlewood did not do wonders in the series against Sri Lanka a few months back, as expected. With cloud cover and a pitch receptive to swing bowling, Hazlewood gave it his all on Day Three to get his team to some respectability. Hazlewood started with his wickets collection by getting the destructor de Kock. The tall pacer got the ball to come into the batsman, and crash onto the middle stump from the gap between bat and pad. With already 3-wickets in his kitty, Hazlewood rattled Keshav Maharaj’s middle and leg stump to hand himself a fourth. Kyle Abbott became Hazlewood’s fifth wicket as he got the all-rounder to play down the wrong line and picked plumb leg-before, which umpire obliged rightly.

Sixth and final wicket in Hazlewood’s bag of victims was Vernon Philander, albeit after a short cameo knock. Philander tried to belter down Hazlewood but could manage only a nick to the keeper to hand the bowler his sixth wicket.

David Warner-Usman Khawaja’s resistance: Warner and Khawaja came to bat together in the very first over of the 2nd innings for Australia. Another collapse was on the cards, going by their performance in recent past, it is what most people would have expected. Warner and Khawaja both were under pressure to make big runs for Australia, namely Khawaja. Warner looked the more equipped against seaming conditions, which made Khawaja take his time to settle in the middle. Warner latched on to anything that was wide and outside off-stump, while defending anything that was straighter in line.

Khawaja was nervy and looked unsure from the word go. Hewas doubtful about his foot-work against Rabada and Abbott, who were displaying an exceptional spell of seam bowling. Khawaja was good against the spin of Maharaj wWhile using Philander’s pace and angle his advantage. Eventually much to the liking of his team, Khawaja achieved a well fought half-century in the process to remain unbeaten on 56.

Warner’s unlucky dismissal: Warner looked set to record yet another half-century, to add to his list of 22. While batting on 45, he had battled everything the South Africans and rain gods had to offer. In an attempt to nudge the ball down to fine-leg region, Warner missed the ball and got a chuck of his thigh guard to lob it up in the air, where it met his elbow. After a brief hello to the elbow, the ball went on to crash into his leg-stump, announcing the end of play for the 30 year-old Warner.

(Vishal Mehra is a reporter at CricketCountry, currently tripping on #BlackMirror and #TheFlashS03, enjoying his weekly dose of anime, monthly viewing of sitcoms, daily playing cricket once every few hours, and also venturing into table-tennis. He can be followed on Twitter @capturethecatch)