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Starc spearheads Australia to 118-run win over Proteas

Australian fast bowler Mitchell Starc took match figures of 9 for 109 to help Australia to a 118-run victory over South Africa in the first Test match at Kingsmead in Durban

Australia celebrate victory in the first Test against South Africa at Kingsmead on 5 March 2018. Picture: @OfficialCSA/Twitter

JOHANNESBURG - Australian fast bowler Mitchell Starc took match figures of 9 for 109 to help Australia to a 118-run victory over South Africa in the first Test match at Kingsmead in Durban.

Australia scored 351 in their first innings thanks largely to a fighting 96 from all-rounder Mitchell Marsh. Captain Steve Smith and vice-captain David Warner also made 56 and 51 respectively in their contributions to the first innings tally.

Keshav Maharaj starred with the ball for the Proteas claiming 5 for 123, while Vernon Philander took 3 for 59. South Africa found the going tough in their first innings with the bat as they were skittled out for 162 and conceding a 189-run lead to the Australians.

Starc produced a masterclass of reverse swing to register his eighth career five wicket haul. Though the Proteas showed great improvement with the ball in the second innings, Australia’s lead grew exponentially. They were eventually bowled out for 227 but had already amassed a mammoth target of 416.

South Africa’s reply got off to the worst possible start, losing three wickets for just 39 runs. Aiden Markram and Theunis de Bruyn stood firm with a solid partnership of 84 runs before the former fell for 36. Markram found an able foil in Quinton de Kock and together looked like they were building a match-winning partnership that was worth 151 before Markram fell for a brilliant 143, his third Test match hundred of his young career.

De Kock found form with a well-constructed 83 and was the last wicket to fall on the final morning.

The match had a few controversial moments as CCTV footage revealed a scuffle between David Warner and Quinton de Kock in the players' tunnel during the Tea interval on Day 4, while Nathan Lyon was charged by the ICC for dropping the ball on AB de Villiers after running him out for a duck.

Australia now take a 1-0 lead in the four-match series while the two teams now focus their attention on St Georges Park in Port Elizabeth for the second Test starting on 9 March.

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