South Africa eye series clean sweep

South Africa coach Mickey Arthur has refused to rule out the possibility of his team launching a late bid to win the third Test and clinch a series clean sweep against Australia.

Having been set 376 to win from a minimum of 116 overs, the Proteas closed day four on 62 for one.



The tourists require a further 314 to win with nine wickets remaining, although that is effectively eight unless captain Graeme Smith changes his mind and opts to bat despite injuries to his left hand and elbow.



It is a tall order for South Africa - although they did successfully chase down 414 to win the first Test in Perth - but Arthur says they will have a go if they can set a good foundation early on the final day.



"If we can get ourselves to tea then (we'll) have a look. If we are unscathed at tea time then we'll be ready to launch a proper assault," Arthur said.



"There is a dressing room full of guys that don't want to give an inch.



"The guys have given their all and have been absolutely amazing for 14 days and none of us want to end up losing the last Test match.



"We went through that in England this year where we played fantastically well and went 2-0 up and lost the last Test match in a dead rubber.



"It took the gloss of our Test victories a little bit so we learnt the hard way there.



"There will be guys battling really hard to make sure it's either 2-0 or 3-0 and not 2-1."



Arthur admitted Australia held the upper hand, however, bowling last on a well-worn SCG pitch that is playing the odd trick.



"I think all three results are still possible tomorrow and that's got to be good," he said.



"That's indicative of how the Test series has gone.



"We're still going to play it hour by hour and we're only realistically (going to) be able to answer (whether we can win) at tea time tomorrow.



"I'd hate to plan and strategise that tomorrow morning.



"We're first thinking of saving the Test before we can think of winning it."



Asked if Smith would bat if the game was there to be won or drawn, Arthur admitted: "I doubt Graeme will come out tomorrow but if there is one over or two overs to see out to draw or one or two required to win, I think we're going to need a chain to chain him down in the dressing room.



"I'm not taking the possibility of Smith batting totally out of the equation but it is very, very and highly, highly unlikely."



Mike Hussey has called for Australia to pull together as a team to salvage some pride from what has been a disappointing series.



"It's going to take all of us, like it did in the first innings," Hussey said.



"I know Peter Siddle got the rewards (in the first innings) and got the five wickets but it was a collective effort and I think all the guys bowled particularly well.



"It's going to take a good hard grind of all the bowlers bowling well in partnerships, being patient, being disciplined - the things that we always talk about in our meetings - and hopefully a few tricks from the pitch would be nice as well to get us a couple of wickets."



If South Africa win they will take over from Australia at the top of the ICC rankings.



Have you tried new the Independent Digital Edition apps?
Caption competition
Caption competition
Latest stories from i100
Daily Quiz
Have you tried new the Independent Digital Edition apps?
SPONSORED FEATURES
Independent Dating
and  

By clicking 'Search' you
are agreeing to our
Terms of Use.

Career Services

Day In a Page

Refugee crisis: David Cameron lowered the flag for the dead king of Saudi Arabia - will he do the same honour for little Aylan Kurdi?

Cameron lowered the flag for the dead king of Saudi Arabia...

But will he do the same honour for little Aylan Kurdi, asks Robert Fisk
Our leaders lack courage in this refugee crisis. We are shamed by our European neighbours

Our leaders lack courage in this refugee crisis. We are shamed by our European neighbours

Humanity must be at the heart of politics, says Jeremy Corbyn
Joe Biden's 'tease tour': Could the US Vice-President be testing the water for a presidential run?

Joe Biden's 'tease tour'

Could the US Vice-President be testing the water for a presidential run?
Britain's 24-hour culture: With the 'leisured society' a distant dream we're working longer and less regular hours than ever

Britain's 24-hour culture

With the 'leisured society' a distant dream we're working longer and less regular hours than ever
Diplomacy board game: Treachery is the way to win - which makes it just like the real thing

The addictive nature of Diplomacy

Bullying, betrayal, aggression – it may be just a board game, but the family that plays Diplomacy may never look at each other in the same way again
Lady Chatterley's Lover: Racy underwear for fans of DH Lawrence's equally racy tome

Fashion: Ooh, Lady Chatterley!

Take inspiration from DH Lawrence's racy tome with equally racy underwear
8 best children's clocks

Tick-tock: 8 best children's clocks

Whether you’re teaching them to tell the time or putting the finishing touches to a nursery, there’s a ticker for that
Charlie Austin: Queens Park Rangers striker says ‘If the move is not right, I’m not going’

Charlie Austin: ‘If the move is not right, I’m not going’

After hitting 18 goals in the Premier League last season, the QPR striker was the great non-deal of transfer deadline day. But he says he'd preferred another shot at promotion
Isis profits from destruction of antiquities by selling relics to dealers - and then blowing up the buildings they come from to conceal the evidence of looting

How Isis profits from destruction of antiquities

Robert Fisk on the terrorist group's manipulation of the market to increase the price of artefacts
Labour leadership: Andy Burnham urges Jeremy Corbyn voters to think again in last-minute plea

'If we lose touch we’ll end up with two decades of the Tories'

In an exclusive interview, Andy Burnham urges Jeremy Corbyn voters to think again in last-minute plea
Tunisia fears its Arab Spring could be reversed as the new regime becomes as intolerant of dissent as its predecessor

The Arab Spring reversed

Tunisian protesters fear that a new law will whitewash corrupt businessmen and officials, but they are finding that the new regime is becoming as intolerant of dissent as its predecessor
King Arthur: Legendary figure was real and lived most of his life in Strathclyde, academic claims

Academic claims King Arthur was real - and reveals where he lived

Dr Andrew Breeze says the legendary figure did exist – but was a general, not a king
Who is Oliver Bonas and how has he captured middle-class hearts?

Who is Oliver Bonas?

It's the first high-street store to pay its staff the living wage, and it saw out the recession in style
Earth has 'lost more than half its trees' since humans first started cutting them down

Axe-wielding Man fells half the world’s trees – leaving us just 422 each

However, the number of trees may be eight times higher than previously thought
60 years of Scalextric: Model cars are now stuffed with as much tech as real ones

60 years of Scalextric

Model cars are now stuffed with as much tech as real ones