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Page last updated at 11:45 GMT, Friday, 19 December 2008

Australia repel Proteas fightback

First Test, Perth (day three, close):
Australia 375 & 228-7 v South Africa 281
Dates: 17-21 December Start time: 0230 GMT
Coverage: Scorecard and reports on BBC Sport website. Live on Sky Sports
Match scorecard

Brad Haddin
Wicketkeeper Haddin performed well with the bat alongside Krejza

Australia survived a second innings attack from South Africa to leave them well-placed heading into day four of the first Test in Perth.

Tail-enders Brad Haddin and Jason Krejza offered a spirited resistance after a near-collapse offered the tourists a glimmer of hope.

Three quick wickets left Australia struggling on 162-7, before Haddin and Krejza guided them to 224-7 at stumps.

South Africa were all out for 281 - 94 runs adrift of the hosts' 375.

However, Australia's top order crumbled in similar fashion to their opening innings as Matthew Hayden was caught and bowled by Dale Steyn having scored just four runs.

It continued a lean streak for the opener, but replays suggest the ball did not make contact with the bat and instead rebounded off his pad.

Simon Katich (37) had looked in good touch but was next to go as he edged to Boucher off the bowling of Jacques Kallis, before the brief resistance of Ricky Ponting and Mike Hussey was ended to leave the hosts struggling on 88-4.

Ponting was caught out by a brilliant Paul Harris delivery as he edged behind, while Hussey was skittled by Makhaya Ntini.


Another brief resistance followed as Australia added a further 50 runs before Michael Clarke, Andrew Symonds and Brett Lee were dismissed in quick succession to leave them with plenty to do.

Steyn claimed his second wicket of the day as Clarke (25) edged a wide delivery to Kallis, Symonds (37) was caught by Graeme Smith off Harris and Lee had added just five runs before Kallis struck for a second time.

However, Australia's tail end rallied with wicketkeeper Haddin unbeaten on 39 and Krejza scoring 28 off 48 balls .

Earlier, Mitchell Johnson continued his incredible spell of bowling as he dismissed Steyn to add to his seven-wicket haul the previous day.

The tourists' innings came to an end as Peter Siddle claimed his first wicket on Australian soil with the dismissal of Mark Boucher for 26.

The world's three leading news agencies are not covering the series due to a dispute with Cricket Australia.

Reuters, Agence France-Presse and Associated Press have suspended all coverage of the 2008-09 season.

Their photographers and reporters did not supply material from within the ground. As a result, we cannot use pictures from the current match.

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see also
Clark to miss South Africa Test
14 Dec 08 |  Cricket
Amla stars in Australian warm-up
11 Dec 08 |  Cricket
Watson handed recall by Australia
08 Dec 08 |  Australia
Uncapped paceman wins SA call-up
22 Nov 08 |  South Africa
Ponting plays down injury concern
04 Dec 08 |  Australia

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