The scene at the test match, played in the Indian city of Visakhapatnam, turned melodramatic as the ball raced for four runs through India's all-rounder Ravindra Jadeja's bat.
Commentators and crowd members guffawed as the perplexed South African fielders and ground staff struggled to spot the ball. They searched resultlessly under the rain-covers.
Eventually, a cameraman came to the rescue of the South African team; he zoomed in on the ball and projected its image on the giant LED screen, revealing its location, lodged between two wedges of boundary padding.
The discovery led to a wave of gleeful cheers from the anticipating crowd at the stadium.
Netizens were thrilled to watch the comic scene and took to Twitter with hilarious responses.
Yeah it's stuck in the barrier just pretend it's gone missing so I can get my breath back— Billy Bamber (@billy_bamber_95) October 3, 2019
Ball to South African players 😂 pic.twitter.com/BU2ABmpAcq— Sneha🇮🇳 (@Shinde25sneha) October 3, 2019
South Africa trails by 349 on the third day of the test match, having reached 153/4 at the end of the first session of Friday’s play.