Australia's hopes of levelling the series soared as South Africa suffered a batting collapse on the first day of the second and final Test at the Wanderers Stadium here yesterday.

Peter Siddle

South Africa were bowled out for 266, losing their last six wickets for 25 runs on a good pitch before bad light prevented the start of Australia's first innings.

Needing a win to share the honours after South Africa won the first Test in Cape Town by eight wickets, a depleted Australian bowling attack could not have hoped for a better day after losing the toss.

Siddle finished as Australia's most successful bowler, taking three for 69, while spinners Lyon and captain Michael Clarke both took two wickets.