And that's the end of Day 3.
A fantastic, quickfire knock from Amla, ably supported at times by du Plessis and de Villiers. The lead is 369 runs, and Amla goes into the sheds seven short of a century. You might wonder if Smith will even let him reach the milestone before declaring tomorrow...surely even the Proteas skipper isn't that cold and calculating?
But really, that's the only point of intrigue because barring some freak weather or a miracle, this series will be tied up at some point in the next two days.
Thanks for following along, feel free to tweet us your thoughts at @SMHSport or myself, @TheMattBungard - goodnight!
Oh goodness me. Another piercing cover drive, Amla into the 90s. What an innings this has been.
Chance! Haddin drops one, but that would have been a screamer. Thick inside edge down the leg side, he dives across and gets a glove to it, but can't haul it in.
The lead has passed 350. There wouldn't be time for Australia to bat today so you would think that a declaration will come at the end of today's play, or within half an hour of the start tomorrow. Either way, the largest fourth innings total Australia have ever posted against South Africa is 339 so you'd be looking at a record chase already.
We're about to move into the extra half hour. 16 overs left, not a chance we're getting through all of them.
Got him! Mitch bangs one in short, de Villiers tries to lean back and lift it over the slips, but only succeeds in spooning it straight to Haddin. How far away are we from a declaration?
Another off side boundary for de Villiers! The lead is up to 339. Dire position for Australia.
After a single, A.B slaps it to basically the same spot as Amla did moments ago.
There were premature cries of "Catch!" but de Villiers sweeps that beautifully into the gap. Great shot.
Again that's overpitched from Siddle, Amla slides back and dispatches it through the leg side.
SHOT! and the next ball is just a perfect off drive. de Villiers into double digits.
de Villiers guides that one down to the third man boundary, and the lead is past 300.
The number one batsman in the world strides out to the middle. Not really an ideal situation when you need quick wickets.
Siddle grabs another!! It just straightened a little bit off the bat, didn't do too much. Faf caught an outside edge and another easy catch for Haddin. Australia really need a couple more very quickly!
Amla with a lovely flick to midwicket and that's his 50. Very solid knock.
Faf tiptoes down the pitch and drives back past Lyon! The lead is now past the record 4th inning score at this ground..
HUGE shout for from Harris - nobody else, including Haddin, even moved, let alone appealed for an edge.
Too full from Siddle, Faf flicks that one up to mid on for a boundary.
An absolutely gorgeous shot from Amla. Cover drive which was almost at the boundary the second it left his bat.
Mitch getting knocked around a little bit. He certainly isn't used to this. Four more for Amla.
A pressure-relieving boundary from du Plessis, and that takes the lead past 250.
A much more sombre tone from Australian tweeps this evening...
CMON MOTHER NATURE!! RAIN RAIN AND MORE RAIN PLEASE :) #SAvAUS— Stuart (@stustar09) February 22, 2014
Need a few wickets in this session Australia. #SAvAUS— Cats_Fan_20 (@cats_fan_20) February 22, 2014
Not a lot happening right now, although we did have a cat on the pitch...
Alright, we are back underway. Big session for both teams here - if Amla and Faf are still standing at close, a victory is surely beyond Australia's reach. If the Aussies can get through the middle order in quick time, perhaps they're a chance. Let's see.
And that is tea.
Amla with a few nice strokes just before the break, as he and du Plessis will try and steady the ship. A very exciting session though, with four wickets being taken...two for each side.
We'll be back in just a little while.
Haddin whips the bails off after Amla reached a Lyon delivery and we're going upstairs. There was a slight hope that Amla had lifted his foot, but the replay sees him with toes firmly planted inside the crease.
Breakthrough!! Siddle persists from around the wicket and gets Elgar fishing!! Easy catch for Haddin and the Proteas are two down!
Lovely cut shot from Elgar to take him to double figures. Not starting as slowly as he did in the first inning!
MITCH GETS HIM AGAIN!!! Big inside edge smashes into the stumps. Smith gone early, care of Johnson! Sound familiar?
Smith gets a big edge, short of the slips but in any case it goes between them and down to the fence.
Johnson charges in for the first ball...and it's whipped off the pads by Smith! not the best start for Australia..
Inning over! Harris gets a big edge to du Plessis in the slips and South Africa lead by 177 runs. We'll be back in just a few minutes for the second South African dig.
Lovely shot from Harris! Another over-pitched delivery is dispatched to the fence. This partnership is now 37!
Siddle whips one off his pads for his first boundary. These two are starting to tack on some very valuable 10th wicket runs..
Shades of Steve Harmison there from Morkel! So far down the leg side it was almost off the pitch...A.B does really well to get a glove to it and allow third man to get across and prevent it from being five wides.
Monstrous from Harris! Short of a length from Philander and he absolutely middles that over the fence at mid wicket - and with that, Australia have avoided the follow on.
Siddle tries to hook that short ball from Morkel, they all go up but it's given not out...again a review. This time they've got it wrong, not near anything aside from perhaps his shirt.
More controversy just moments later!! Siddle ducks under a bouncer from Morkel, nobody bar Dale Steyn seems interested in referring that, but the replay shows it hit him flush on the glove! It could have been inning over!
Second over after lunch!! Smith is initially given not out - there is a review from Graeme Smith and despite a lack of hot spot and barely a noise on snicko, it's been overturned. The Aussie team and Smith look on is disbelief.
Hey everyone, apologies for the delay. Welcome back for the second session.
That's lunch. Johnson's wicket brings a conclusion to a great session for the South Africans who have bowled with venom all morning. Australia lost four wickets - Warner (70) , Lyon (15), Haddin (9) and Johnson (27) - for 93 runs. Australia will start after lunch on 8-205 needing 19 runs to avoid the follow on.
The South Africans will be confident of wrapping up the innings quickly, although may not chose to enforce the follow on after losing Wayne Parnell to a groin injury.
Morkel looked vicious in working over Johnson and picking up the wicket of Lyon, while Steyn, Duminy and Philander took the others in the session. With Smith on 49 not out he will need plenty of fighting support from Peter Siddle and Ryan Harris.
CLEAN BOWLED. Well, Smith maintains his faith in Duminy and the offspinner shows his worth again, clean bowling Johnson for 27. Duminy again got great drift and the ball went straight through the gap as Johnson played for more spin.
Lunch has been called.
Huge appeal is turned down. Morkel unleashes a vicious bouncer that hits Johnson right on his helmet's Australian emblem. The ball balloons up and is taken by keeper A.B. de Villiers. Johnson simply stands his ground and adjust his helmet which has been pushed across his head. Snicko shows the ball hit nothing but helmet, which Johnson replaces before facing the next ball, which predictably is another short one. Morkel is really working over Johnson here.
Johnson picks up a three for Australia to pass 200. Johnson is 26, Smith is 47. Australia 7-202 and needs 22 runs to avoid follow on.
SAf team media manager @leratomalekutu confirms @WayneParnell has suspected groin strain (has suffered prev). Now scans in hospital. #SAvAUS — Jesse Hogan (@Jesse_Hogan) February 22, 2014
Johnson has taken to Duminy hitting a four and six off consecutive balls. Don't think Graeme Smith can afford to let the big hitting lefty to get into his groove against Duminy for much longer.
South Africa has bowled 20 overs this morning with Australia scoring 72 runs to take the score to 184 and losing three wickets.
Not the sight Australia wanted to see #SAvAUS pic.twitter.com/5eiTbmeUol — CA Digital Media (@CricketAus) February 22, 2014
What was left of Haddin's wicket !
J.P. Duminy comes into the attack to replace the injured Parnell with the offspinner getting nice drift in his first over.
CLEAN BOWLED !! Great ball by Steyn cuts back into Haddin and goes straight through the gap and takes middle stump. Haddin is not able repeat his heroics and trudges off with Australia 7-168. Mitchell Johnson is the new batsman.
Huge appeal for LBW against Haddin off Steyn. The South Africans only have one referral up their sleeves so do not go upstairs. Turns out to be correct decision with ball sliding down legside and missing wickets.
Bad news for the South Africans with Wayne Parnell pulling up with what appears to be a leg injury. He left the fields immediately with Dean Elgar finishing the over.
That would have been out if it was a direct hit. Haddin pushed for a second run to fine leg but survived when Steyn's throw narrowly missed a direct hit.
Well that didn't last long. Steyn straightens up too much and Smith drives on the onside again to rack up another boundary.
Steyn draws an edge from Steve Smith that goes passed slips to give him one of the few runs he has scored on the off-side.
This has been a scary sight for the Australian batsmen today, Morne Morkel. Photo: Getty Images
Drinks. Australia limps to the break at 6-157. The South Africans have dropped two catches today, four in this game.
12 chances in 2.5 inns. Absurd. #SAvAUS — Jesse Hogan (@Jesse_Hogan) February 22, 2014
ANOTHER dropped catch !! This time it was Robin Peterson who dropped an absolute sitter. The South Africans have been attacking Steve Smith's pads and the Australian batsman obliged spooning a lazy flick straight to Peterson, who is on the field for Amla, who dropped a catch earlier in the morning.
Amla has dislocated a finger after that fielding effort. It's being put back into place and he should be fine. #savaus #cricket — Firdose Moonda (@FirdoseM) February 22, 2014
Another bowling change with Wayne Parnell taking over from Philander who also had a neat spell, claiming Warner's wicket.
Morkel is being given a break after a fantastic opening spell in which he claimed Lyon's wicket. He is replaced by Dale Steyn.
Great cover drive by Steve Smith off Philander. Four runs followed by four more off the next ball, this time all run on the legside.
Morkel keeps the same line to Haddin, but the cagey Haddin ducks under the bouncer without too much hassle.
Morkel is causing Smith problems as he spears short pitched balls from around the wicket into him. Meanwhile, Amla looks in some pain in the dressing rooms.
Another dropped catch !! Hashim Amla reacts too slowly at gully to take a sharp chance off Brad Haddin. The ball flew past him as he stretched over his head to his left. Amla left the ground straight afterwards to get treatment on his hand.
This is more like it for Brad Haddin, 128 for 6. None of that 330 for 5 rubbish of last week. #savaus — Andrew McGlashan (@andymcg_cricket) February 22, 2014
At 6-133 Scene is perfectly set for another Brad Haddin rescue mission. Can the Aussie wicket keeper be the savior again and help Australia avoid the follow on ?
OUT ! Suddenly Lyon looks like a No.11 again. He moves to the legside for some reason and Morkel follows him. Lyon could only push at the ball and it rebounds straight onto off stump. Australia now in real trouble.
Steve Smith has come to the crease and leg glances two balls in a row. Finishes the over on 8.
CAUGHT! Warner is out slashing wildly at a wide ball from Philander. Edged to first slip Graeme Smith who took a straight forward but tidy catch. Warner only added five to his overnight score to be out for 70. Australia is now 5-120.
Lyon is doing his job of hanging in there and irritating the South Africans with Morkel exchanging a few words with him at the end of the over. No surprises there from the aggressive quick. Australia has moved to 4-120 after the first four overs.
Another appeal against Lyon. This time for caught behind off Morkel. But given not out as ball clearly misses bat and clips his leg on the way through.
Warner faces his Morkel for the first time this morning and confidently drives him to mid-off. Gets a single from the next ball.
LBW appeal against Lyon off Philander. Did not get a lot of support from his teammates and was turned down as it was going down legside.
Nice fiery first up over by Morkel. Lyon gets a run to take Australia 4-117.
Lyon is hit. It did not take Morkel to shake up Lyon with a nasty ball that rose sharply and struck the nightwatchman near the armpit.
Now it's Nathan Lyon's turn to face his first balls of the morning against the pick of the bowlers yesterday Morne Morkel. He very confidently met the first ball on the front foot.
There seems to be no love lost between Warner and Vernon Philander. The South African bowler stuck to a nice tight line in the opening over of the morning, worry Warner with a bit of inswing. Warner scored two off the over to take Australia to 4-116.
Just before play starts, HERE is a wrap of play on day two from Fairfax Media cricket writer Jesse Hogan.
Early wicket ... Australia's batsman Chris Rogers, second from right, leaves the field after dismissed by South Africa's bowler Vernon Philander, left, for 5 runs in Port Elizabeth. Photo: AP Photo
Australia starts day three of the second Test in the awkward position of 4-112, trailing South Africa’s first innings by 311. First Test centurion David Warner has again ridden his luck to be not out on 64. He will be re-joined at the crease at the start of the first session by night watchman Nathan Lyon, who is on 12.
The South African bowlers having been the more threatening on the Port Elizabeth strip, with Morne Morkel particularly unlucky, and this session could go a long way to deciding the outcome of this Test, and South Africa’s hopes of keeping the series alive.