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Aussies soar, Steyn injured

Cape Town: David Warner hit a century and captain Michael Clarke battled his way back into form as Australia dominated the first day of the series-deciding third and final Test, against South Africa, at Newlands, on Saturday.

Warner put a week of controversy behind him and hit a sparkling 135 off 162 balls in Australia’s total of 331 for three.

Clarke, who twice needed treatment after being hit, went past 24 for the first time in 12 Test innings to make 92 not out on a day when South Africa lost strike bowler Dale Steyn with a hamstring injury midway through the afternoon.

Steyn, who took the first wicket, left the field after bowling one ball of the fourth over of his third spell and did not return.

It was the second time in successive matches that South Africa, having picked only four specialist bowlers, lost one to injury after Wayne Parnell suffered a groin strain in the second Test.

Clarke survived some hostile short-pitched bowling from Morne Morkel to be on 22 not out at tea.

When he was on nine he was struck on the left forearm and needed treatment.

Four runs later he turned away from another bouncer and was felled by a blow to the cheek.

He again needed treatment before resuming his innings and was then struck on the glove, with the ball falling out of reach of short leg fielder Duminy.

Late in the day, Clarke took a blow on the right thumb from Morkel, bowling with the second new ball.

Clarke and Steve Smith scored freely towards the close, against the second new ball, adding 37 runs in six overs before the close.

Clarke faced 191 balls, hitting nine fours.