Australia's third Test report card

Written By Unknown on Senin, 03 Desember 2012 | 23.40

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Gutted ... Michael Clarke's men missed out on claiming the No.1 Test ranking. Source: Daniel Wilkins / News Limited

After Australia lose the third Test against South Africa, ending Ricky Ponting's career on a flat note and missing out on taking the No.1 Test ranking, we pass judgment on each player's performance.

3rd Test - WACA Ground

30 November 2012 - Day 4, Session 3

Australia 2nd Innings

M. Starc 68 43 9 2 158.14
N. Lyon 31 43 6 0 72.09
D. Steyn 22.5 6 72 3 3.15

Ed Cowan
Rating: 6 out of 10
Cowan started the Test horribly, removed for a golden duck in the first innings, but his second dig proved his value to this side. He played very well – and most importantly, very sensibly – until he fell into the Proteas' trap and played a hook shot straight to deep square leg. His fighting 50 on day four gave Australia a glimmer of hope, although it proved to be in vain.

David Warner
4 out of 10
Unlike most of his teammates, Warner managed to get himself set in both innings at the WACA, but on both occasions he failed to convert that into a meaningful score. It's interesting to note that on both occasions he was well set overnight but got out early the next morning – perhaps suggesting a loss of concentration more than anything else.

Shane Watson
Rating: 4.5 out of 10
What to do with Shane Watson? That is one of the most perplexing questions to come out of the third Test. He bowled accurately but was restricted to a small amount of overs – he only bowled nine in each innings – and never looked comfortable at the crease in his two short knocks. A move out of the No.3 batting position could be on the cards soon.

Ricky Ponting
Rating: 2 out of 10
One almost feels guilty rating Ponting's performance in his final Test, because he deserves so much better. However, in some ways his scores of four and eight – and indeed his performances with the bat throughout the series - are a vindication of his decision to call time on his career. Punter still managed to provide the moment of the match when he saluted the fans on his final walk back to the pavilion in Test cricket.

Think someone deserves better marks, or worse? Let us know by leaving a comment at the bottom of the page!

Michael Clarke
5 out of 10
Clarke proved he was human after all in this Test, recording single-digits in the first innings before lifting Aussie spirits with 44 in the second. Most telling, though, were Clarke's actions as fielding captain. It was one of the first times during his spell in charge of this side that he's looked bereft of ideas, as South Africa's batsmen plundered Australia's bowlers to all corner of the WACA. Most of this was down to erratic bowling, but it should serve as a big learning experience for Clarke.

Michael Hussey
Rating: 4 out of 10
As Hussey walked out to bat in both innings, there was an expectation that he'd be able to get Australia out of trouble, as he'd done so many times before. Alas, it wasn't to be, as Mr Cricket was brought undone by good bowling on both occasions.

Matthew Wade
Rating: 7 out of 10
Wicketkeeper Wade was the only batsman to put up proper resistance in Australia's first innings, mixing caution with aggression to record 68 out of Australia's total of 163. He couldn't repeat that effort in the second innings, but another plus for Wade was an improved performance with the gloves.

John Hastings
Rating: 4.5 out of 10
Hastings looked comfortable enough opening the bowling at the start of the Test, but his efforts in South Africa's second innings showed he still has some way to go before he can be regarded as a long-term fixture in the Test arena. His figures of 0-102 off 19 overs tell a story of their own. Some big-hitting late in the match showed that he might be better suited to the all-rounder's role down the track.

Mitchell Johnson
Rating: 7 out of 10
Big Mitch certainly looks at home at the WACA, bowling with plenty of pace and more accuracy than the last time he graced the Test arena. He may not have got as many wickets as his namesake, but Johnson was the pick of the Aussie bowlers, especially on day three when bowling looked about as fun as nails on a chalkboard. He also took a couple of sensational catches off his own bowling for the highlights reel.

Mitchell Starc
Rating: 6.5 out of 10
If this were based on numbers alone, Starc would easily be Australia's highest-rating player thanks to his six wickets in the second innings and his incredible knock of 68 off just 43 balls when the game was in its death throes. But cricket is about more than just numbers, and the fact is that Starc's wayward bowling on day three contributed to South Africa's massive total. His best balls are almost unplayable, but unfortunately for Starc he often lacked the consistency needed at Test level.

Nathan Lyon
Rating: 5 out of 10
The third Test was a bit of a mixed bag for Lyon. He showed spinners can be effective at the WACA in the first innings, cashing in on the pressure created by the pace bowlers to pick up three wickets himself, but the second innings was one he'd rather forget, as A.B. de Villiers in particular toyed with him with an amazing array of shots.

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