Philander's double strike puts South Africa in command

Vernon Philander dismissed in-form Michael Hussey to put South Africa back in the match Getty Images

Johannesburg: Nov 21, 2011

Opening bowler Vernon Philander made two crucial strikes as South Africa and Australia engaged in a tense battle on the fifth and final day of the second and final Test between South Africa and Australia at the Wanderers Stadium on Monday.

Australia, needing 310 to win and share the series, were 222 for six at tea, still 88 short of victory.

After a three-hour rain delay, Philander bowled Australian Michael Clarke in the fourth over of the day after only three runs had been added to the overnight 142 for three.

Australia suffered a major blow 20 runs later when Ricky Ponting was caught at second slip off Morne Morkel for 62, having added only eight runs off 34 balls as the bowlers took advantage of helpful overcast conditions.

But Mike Hussey and Brad Haddin put together a watchful sixth wicket partnership of 50 and with the sun starting to beat down on the ground the odds seemed to be swinging slightly in favour of Australia.

There was yet another twist in a match of fluctuating fortunes when Philander was brought back shortly before tea and trapped Hussey leg before wicket for 39 with a ball which swung into the left-hander.

Hussey sought a television review but there was no reprieve as umpire Billy Bowden’s decision was shown to be correct. Hussey batted for 124 minutes and faced 77 balls.

Philander had figures of four for 50 at tea.

It left Haddin and the hard-hitting Mitchell Johnson as Australia’s not out batsmen. Haddin was on 24 but seldom looked secure as he played and missed several times and was hit on the helmet by a bouncer from Dale Steyn.

South Africa, who won the first Test in Cape Town by eight wickets, have not won a home series against Australia since 1969/70. (AFP)

Brief Scores: South Africa 266 (AB de Villiers 64, Ashwell Prince 50, Jacques Kallis 54; Peter Siddle 3 for 69, Nathan Lyon 2 for 52, Michael Clarke 2 for 6) & 339 (Hashim Amla 105, AB de Villiers 73; Pat Cummins 6 for 79) lead Australia 296 (Phil Hughes 88, Shane Watson 88; Dale Steyn 4 for 64) & 222 for 6 (Usman Khawaja 65, Ricky Ponting 62, Brad Haddin 24*, Mitchell Johnson 6*; Vernon Philander 4 for 50) by 88 runs.

Full Scorecard

Photo gallery