Proteas face another defeat after Australia racked up 386-run lead
Australian wicketkeeper batsman Alex Carey after scoring his maiden Test hundred against South Africa at MCG on Wednesday.

South Africa were staring at another humiliating defeat as wicketkeeper batsman Alex Carey scored his maiden century on Wednesday, enabling as Australia to declare their innings at 575 for 8 on the third day of the Melbourne Test at MCG.

It means the hosts gained a lead of 386 and became the clear favourites to clinch the three-Test series even before the last tie in Sydney, barring some miracle that can lift the South African batsman.

Australia lead the three-match series 1-0 after a six-wicket win in the first Test in Brisbane against the visitors.

Meanwhile, the Proteas began their second innings in a disappointing fashion as they lost their captain –Dean Elgar – in the second over for duck when Carey caught him down the leg side on the bowling of Pat Cummins, his counterpart.

So, Elgar has scored only 31 runs in the four innings during the series so far – illustrating the deep hole the South Africans are in right now when it comes to batting.

It could have been worse for South Africa because Theunis de Bruyn was dropped by Warner on three. Instead, he survives on six not out alongside opener Sarel Erwee on seven.

When rain stopped the play in the evening session, Sarel Erwee was batting on 7 and de Bruyn on 6.

It ended as another dismal day for the tourists, but it had begun in promising fashion with a string of wickets in the morning session.

Anrich Nortje dismissed Travis Head for 51 before cleaning up David Warner with a superb yorker as the Australian, who resumed on 200 after retiring with cramp on day two, was out to the first ball he faced on day three. Pat Cummins saw off the hat-trick ball but was soon caught behind off Kagiso Rabada for four.

South Africa had taken three wickets for five runs, to leave Australia, who had started the day on 386 for three, on 400 for six.

But Australia found a first-innings second wind when Nathan Lyon joined Carey at the crease. Lyon scored 25 before all-rounder Cameron Green made light of a broken index finger sustained on day two to score an unbeaten 51.

Green’s injury will keep him out of the bowling attack for the rest of the match while also missing the third Test in Sydney. He took 5-27 in South Africa’s first innings.

Carey, playing in his 14th Test, motored along, reaching 111 before he was caught and bowled by Marco Jansen.

He is the first Australian wicketkeeper to make a Test century since Brad Haddin in 2013 and only the second at the Melbourne Cricket Ground after Rod Marsh.

An important thing to note is that South Africa, despite having a strong bowling attack, were kept in the field for more than five sessions and bowled 145 overs in total and remained unable to bowl Australia out on a surface that remained good for batting.

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