Temba Bavuma has been having a memorable time so far in the first Test in South Africa's tour of Australia. After hitting a gritty half-century, and struggling to get a high-five from teammate Kagiso Rabada, Bavuma pulled off what will surely go down as one of the most athletic pieces of fielding ever.
After being set a mammoth target of 539, Australia needed openers David Warner and Shaun Marsh to get them off to a strong start. The pair added 50 runs for the opening wicket, and were looking good to continue over the next session-and-a-half.
Little did they expect Bavuma to pull off a Jonty Rhodes-like run out that would start off a mini-slide for the Australians.
— Cricket Video (@CricketVideo) November 6, 2016
In the delivery right after Australia brought up their 50-run opening stand, Warner set off for a quick single after pushing the ball towards point. An agile Bavuma, who became the first black South African cricketer to slam a Test hundred, ran to his left, got into an awkward position while collecting the ball to his right, and managed to effect a sharp throw towards the non-striker's end with both his feet off the ground.
Former Australian batsman Chris Rogers went on to describe the run out as "one of the best pieces of fielding I've ever seen".
Despite the heroic effort, there weren't too many celebrations going around initially, and Warner appeared quite sure to have made his ground. The replays, however, suggested otherwise, and the southpaw was caught a fraction short of his crease when the ball hit the base of middle stump at the bowler's end. Warner was dismissed for 35, with opening partner Marsh joining him at the pavilion later that over.
South Africa appeared set for a big win after Australia finished the day on 169/4, with Usman Khawaja and Mitchell Marsh batting on 58 and 15 respectively. Rabada took three wickets to push the hosts on the backfoot, and the Proteas will look to go all guns blazing on the final day in their pursuit to heap further misery on the Australians after their recent 5-0 ODI series whitewash back home.