Back in 2008, Dale Steyn, who celebrates his 33rd birthday, produced one of his best Test performances against Australia at the MCG.
The Proteas’ 2008 tour to Australia will always remembered for being the first time a South African team won a Test series in Australia. The Proteas did the job in the second Test and it was all due to the good work by Dale Steyn, who had match figures of 10-157.
South Africa won the toss and sent Australia to bat first, this after they had successfully chased in the first Test of the series a week earlier. Steyn shared the new ball with Makhaya Ntini. The ‘Mdingi express’ broke the first-wicket partnership early on to have the Baggy Greens on 22-1. The Aussies fought their way back into the game and were 128-1 by the end of the 33rd over – with Ricky Ponting and Simon Katich occupying the crease.
Steyn took his first wicket when he angled one in on Katich, who didn’t have enough in his repertoire to deal with the in-swinger. In similar fashion he claimed his second of the match when he beat Mike Hussey for swing, pace and bounce. He also added the wicket of Brett Lee when he nicked one to Jaques Kallis in the slips. The fourth wicket of the innings for Steyn came when he clean-bowled Mitchelll Johnson, and he took his five-for when Nathan Hauritz was caught low by Graeme Smith in the slips. Australia ended their first innings all out on 394.
In their first innings South Africa got 459 runs and all-rounder JP Duminy scored 166 of those. South Africa had a lead of 54 runs.
In the second, Steyn was in a mean mood again, taking the wicket of Matthew Hayden who drove the ball straight to Duminy at cover. He followed that up with Simon Katich’s wicket. His third wicket was that of Michael Clarke, who, just like Hayden, fell to the trap and drove the ball straight to Neil McKenzie at cover. The next victim was Andrew Symonds who nicked after Steyn had bowled a beautiful out-swinger, much to the delight of his teammates. He took his tenth of the match when he got the edge of Peter Siddle’s bat to help bowl Australia out for 247.
The Proteas went on to chase down the 183 at the expense of only one wicket, and claimed the series win with a match to go.
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