5 Mar 2014

Graeme Smith ends Test crciket with a whimper

5:32 am on 5 March 2014

Graeme Smith made three in his final test innings as South Africa were slipping towards a heavy defeat at the close on the fourth day of the series-deciding third cricket test against Australia at Newlands.

Chasing a victory target of 511, the hosts will resume on 71 for four wickets on the final day despite a valiant effort from AB de Villiers and Hashim Amla who survived 31 overs before the latter was out 20 minutes before stumps.

South Africa were 15 for 3 at one stage.

It was a tame way for Smith's 205th test innings to finish but it was in keeping with his poor form in a series in which he has scored just 45 runs in six innings.

The South African captain, who announced his retirement from international cricket yesterday, bowed out having made 9,265 runs at an average of 48.25 in 117 tests, 109 of those as captain.

The struggles of the home side were in sharp contrast to the Australia innings, when David Warner made batting look easy as he hit 145 from 156 balls and the tourists declared their second innings on 303 for five.

It was a second century of the match for the left-hander, who took his runs total in the series to 543 at an average of 91.