Cricket Sports

South Africa thrash Australia by 492 runs to win fourth Test

South Africa arrived on day five knowing they would be celebrating at some point today, they just couldn’t have dreamed it would be so soon. Vernon Philander struck with his opening ball and then again later in his first over to start the rot. Four more fell at his hand in a mesmerising spell of seam bowling before a mindless run-out sealed the deal.

Vernon Philander took 6-21 as South Africa emphatically beat Australia in the fourth Test to win the controversial four-game series 3-1.

Under 90-minutes of play to secure seven wickets and complete a 3-1 series victory, South Africa’s first at home over Australia since 1970.

Vernon Philander finished with 6-21 after a devastating spell of bowling. Photograph: Siphiwe Sibeko/Reuters

Australia have been rocked by the ball-tampering scandal with their former captain Steve Smith, his deputy David Warner and batsman Cameron Bancroft sent home after the third Test in Cape Town.

The match was also Australia coach Darren Lehmann’s last in charge of the team after he resigned in the wake of the ball-tampering scandal.

He saw his side make 221 in response to South Africa’s first innings of 488 in which Aiden Markram made 152.

The home side made 344-6 in their second innings, with captain Faf du Plessis hitting 120, to leave Australia needing an improbable 612 for victory.

Lehmann’s side quickly surrendered in Johannesburg as Philander dismissed brothers Shaun and Mitchell Marsh with the first and fourth balls of the final day respectively.

The swing bowler then removed Aussie skipper Tim Paine and missed out on a hat-trick after taking the wickets of Pat Cummins and Chadd Sayers in successive deliveries.

The final wicket came after Nathan Lyon was run out off the bowling of Morne Morkel, who was playing his last match before retiring from international cricket.

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