Hendricks’ five-for restricts Australians’ lead to 109

South Africa A 220 and 55 for 0 (Hamza 25*, Malan 27*) trail Australians 329 (Cummins 59*, Bancroft 45, Hendricks 5-83) by 54 runs

A five-wicket haul from Beuran Hendricks restricted the Australians to a succession of unconverted starts on the second day of their tour match against South Africa A in Benoni. Replying to South Africa A’s first-innings total of 220, the Australians were bowled out after taking a 109-run first-innings lead. The left-armer Hendricks picked up his 14th five-wicket haul in first-class cricket, and found useful support from his fellow seamers Duanne Olivier and Malusi Siboto, who picked up two wickets apiece.

Then the home side’s openers, Zubayr Hamza and Pieter Malan, batted through the last 18 overs of day two to move their side to 55 for 0 at stumps.

Ten of the Australians got to or past 18, but only one of them – Pat Cummins at No. 8, who made an unbeaten 59 – went on to make 50. The only batsman out for a single-digit score was Peter Handscomb, who was out for a three-ball duck on day one.

Resuming with their side 87 for 3, the overnight pair of Cameron Bancroft and Shaun Marsh stretched their fourth-wicket stand to 60 before the latter fell for 25. Bancroft fell 4.5 overs later for 45.

A few more partnerships of middling length followed: 43 for the sixth wicket between Mitchell Marsh and Tim Paine, 47 for the eighth between Cummins and Mitchell Starc, and 64 – the biggest of the innings – between Cummins and Nathan Lyon, who struck 38 off 34 balls with three fours and two sixes. All of these allowed the Australians to comfortably surpass South Africa A’s first-innings effort.

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