Next week begins one of the most anticipated Test series in international cricket when South Africa and Australia face off in Durban.
It’s always a tough contest when the two powerhouses meet, and the upcoming tour will be no different.
Both teams come off impressive wins before this series, and they will be looking to keep their momentum going.
We look at the five performances by South Africa from past series that have stuck in our minds.
Proteas bowl Aussies all out for 47
The first Test of Australia’s tour of 2011-12 will always be remembered for being an exciting affair that saw both sides bowled out for under 100 at least once in the game.
Things looked pear shaped for South Africa when they found themselves all out for just 96 runs in response to Australia’s first innings total of 284. What happened next on the seamer-friendly Newlands pitch will never be forgotten. The bowling triumvirate of Dale Steyn, Morne Morkel and Vernon Philander went on to remove all Australian wickets for just 47 runs. That left South Africa needing just 236 to win the game, and that was achieved on the third day.
JP Duminy and Steyn’s 180-run partnership
Australia was in serious decline in 2009, and it gave the Graeme Smith-led Proteas the perfect opportunity to win a series Down Under. The first Test at the WACA in Perth was won by Smith’s men, and they headed into the second in Melbourne looking to seal a series win. In reply to Australia’s first innings total of 394 all out, South Africa found themselves in trouble at 251-8. When Steyn walked out to the middle, no one expected what was to come.
Steyn played beautifully, supporting JP Duminy well. Both batsmen played the innings of their lives, and were able to get South Africa to 431, before Duminy was out for 166. Steyn stuck around at the other end, and continued to frustrate the Aussies alongside Makhaya Ntini. Steyn’s 76 on the day was also his best performance with the bat. He also finished the game with 10 wickets, and was given the man-of-the-match award.
Fanie de Villiers takes 10 wickets in Sydney
In the mid-90s, South Africa had one of the most fearsome opening bowling pairs in Allan Donald and Fanie de Villiers, and they struck fear into every team they met. South Africa started the game poorly, and their first innings was nothing to write home about. But Donald and De Villiers kept them in the game, taking four wickets each as they kept the Aussies well within their sights. Their second innings was much better, but it too meant that they would have to fight hard to win the game.
With the Australians needing 117 to win, De Villiers tore through their top order for just 56 runs while Donald destroyed the middle-order batsmen to leave the home side reeling. A fighting 29 off 38 balls by Craig McDermott nearly got Australia there, but when Vinnige Fanie cleaned up the tail, the party began as South Africa took a 1-0 lead in the three-match series.
A solid all round team performance in Perth in 2016
In 2016 the Proteas’ solid 177-run win in Perth was due to a brilliant performance by the team as they took a 1-0 lead in the series. Temba Bavuma and Quinton de Kock ensured that South Africa made a relatively good start in the first innings, despite an early wobble, while the bowling quartet of Steyn, Philander, Kagiso Rabada and Keshav Maharaj did their bit to restrict Australia to just a two-run lead.
Dean Elgar, Duminy, De Kock, Philander and Maharaj then made sure that the Proteas posted a huge total to defend. Rabada then came up with one of his most mature Test performances and finished the innings with five wickets as they bowled the Australians out for 361 to win the game.
Smith tries valiantly to save the match with a broken hand
Who can forget skipper Smith batting with a broken hand as the Proteas sought to draw their final Test of their 2008-09 tour Down Under. The series had already been won going into the third game, and South Africa were looking to whitewash the Aussies. The captain hurt his hand in the first innings, and as it looked like they had a chance of playing for the draw on the final day, Smith came out to bat at number 11, and tried in vein to save the match.
Photo: Lee Warren/Gallo Images