They recovered - somewhat - to 152/6 and eventually posted 242 thanks to Quinton de Kock and Temba Bavuma.
Remember how at the end of that first day South Africa were in deep trouble, with Australia’s openers having knocked off nearly half of the runs by stumps. Remember when Dale Steyn broke down on the second morning, leaving South Africa with just two front-line seamers on a good deck for batting.
Remember when Vernon Philander, Kagiso Rabada and debutant Keshav Maharaj stunned Australia, bowling them out for 244 after they’d been 158/0.
Remember when JP Duminy - under pressure for his spot in the team when the season started - and Dean Elgar batted with a mixture of grit and fluency to establish a dominant position for South Africa, giving the depleted attack some much-needed rest and a substantial amount of runs to bowl at on a flat Waca pitch.
Remember Bavuma sensationally running out David Warner.
Remember when Rabada picked apart Adam Voges’s technique and rattled his mind in one over before dismissing him.
South Africa won that first Test by 177 runs, lest you have forgotten.
Remember when Vernon Philander and Kyle Abbott reduced Australia to 8/4 in the first half an hour of the second Test in Hobart.
Remember when Australia were bowled out for 85, Big Vern taking 5/21, De Kock and Duminy flinging themselves about to grab outrageous catches and Dane Vilas - a wicket-keeper - miss-fielding, then turning and throwing out Callum Ferguson.
Remember when De Kock scored a hundred - what magnificent form hecurrently is in - and Bavuma made 74.
Remember when Abbott dismissed the Aussie openers, Warner off a ricochet from his elbow. Remember when Abbott took “six-for”, Rabada took “four-for”, including a brute of a ball to Peter Nevill, and then dismissed Joe Mennie lbw with a full toss two balls later after South Africa’s captain had shined the ball.
South Africa won by an innings and 80 runs - an innings and 80 runs!
In Australia. Remember that?
South Africa beat Australia 2-1 in Australia in the 2008/09 Test series. South Africa beat Australia 1-0 in Australia in 2012/13. South Africa will beat Australia in Australia again in 2016/17 - they may even - hell, given the way the teams are playing - whitewash them.
Cricket is a weird game, stupid even to people who’ve never seen it before or played it, but there can rarely have been a week as moronic as the one that’s just unfolded in Australia this week.
So forget that crap - and remember South Africa’s performances. That’s all that matters.
The StarCricket writer Stuart Hess says there can rarely have been a week as moronic as the one that’s just unfolded in Australia this week.
Original source: Forget the crap, remember SA’s performances