South Africa vs England, 2nd Test, Day 5

Early on the fifth day Anderson trapped the night-watchmen Maharaj in front to leave the visitors just seven wickets away from victory. This brought the South African captain to the middle that had a history of playing long match saving innings in difficult circumstances. Perhaps on this occasion though Du Plessis underestimated England’s spin option in Dom Bess as just before lunch he unveiled an expansive sweep shot which was caught on the leg side. At lunch it felt like England’s game.

Throughout the first half of the day the real thorn in England’s side was the debutant opener in Peter Malan who had resisted up until now. This resisted when the left arm bowling of Sam Curran encouraged Malan to play at one as he edged it behind to the slip cordon, after this it felt like England only had one more partnership to break.

De Kock and van der Dussen were batting nicely and took South Africa up to tea just five wickets down and suddenly the match appeared to be slipping away from England. Throughout the match neither bowling attack had been able to do what England need which is to take a clatter of wickets.

In the final session of the match Quinton De Kick went to a very controlled fifty which was the slowest of his career. Like his captain earlier in the day perhaps the introduction of Denly’s leg-spin meant a dip in his concentration levels as out of nowhere he mistimed a pull shot of a short ball and hit it straight to Crawley.  

England suddenly had an end open as the first of the South African bowlers in Philander came out who by no means was a mug with the bat. Down at the other end van der Dussen was batting at a strike rate of around 12 until broad elected to place in a leg slip. Straight away of his 140th delivery Dussen tickled one straight into the arms of Anderson in the newly placed leg slip position and England could smell blood.

With Anderson suffering from a rib injury and Broad coming to the end of his spell the final push fell to England’s talismanic all-rounder in Ben Stokes. The Durham man had Pretorius on toast however Philander strangely took the option not help out his partner and continued to stay at the other end against the spin.

This would prove to be a costly mistake as Stokes dismissed Pretorius and Nortje in consecutive balls. The second one due to a great catch by Craweley who in the slips deflected the ball up with his left and caught it in his right. The game was surely England’s as the last pair were faced with trying to bat out the final eight overs.

Roared on by the vocal travelling English support Stokes took Rabada’s wicket to finish off the match and lead the wild celebrations as England had won their first match at Cape Town for over 60 years. For Root’s men it will come as massive relief to pull the series back at 1-1 after their disappointing first test display. The two teams will now take a much needed rest before the third test at Port Elizabeth before what could be a grand stand finale in the final two matches.


South Africa’s 2nd Innings

P J Malanc Stokes b Curran8428830
D Elgarc Buttler b Denly347820
Z Hamzac Buttler b Anderson185910
K A Maharajlbw b Anderson21700
F du Plessisc Denly b Bess195730
H E van der Dussenc Anderson b Broad1714020
Q de Kockc Crawley b Denly5010770
V D Philanderc Pope b Stokes85120
D Pretoriusc Root b Stokes02200
A Nortjec Crawley b Stokes0100
K Rabada31100
Extras6lb 0 2w 5nb13 
Totalfor 10248137.4 overs
J M Anderson189232
S C J Broad238371
D M Bess3314571
S M Curran164371
J L Denly184422
J E Root60110
B A Stokes238353

England’s 2nd Innings

Z Crawleyc de Kock b Rabada253550
D P Sibley133311191
J L Denlyc Pretorius b Nortje3111130
J E Rootc du Plessis b Pretorius619870
D M Bessc de Kock b Nortje0800
B A Stokesc van der Dussen b Maharaj724773
O J D Popeb Rabada3800
J C Buttlerc de Kock b Nortje231802
S M Curranc Hamza b Maharaj131520
S C J Broad81510
Extras18b 3lb 0 1w22 
Totalfor 8391111.0 overs
K Rabada203692
V D Philander147240
A Nortje182613
D Pretorius164561
K A Maharaj4391602

South Africa’s 1st Innings

D Elgarc Root b Bess88180100
P J Malanc Root b Broad51710
Z Hamzac Stokes b Broad51210
F du Plessisc Stokes b Anderson11400
H E van der Dussenc Stokes b Curran6818770
Q de Kockc Anderson b Curran202620
V D Philander175800
D Pretoriusc Stokes b Anderson4810
K A Maharajc Sibley b Anderson41600
K Rabadac Buttler b Anderson0100
A Nortjec Stokes b Anderson41610
Extras4b 2lb 0 1nb7 
Totalfor 1022389.0 overs
J M Anderson196405
S C J Broad186382
S M Curran133392
D M Bess273621
B A Stokes90340
J E Root3140

England’s 1st Innings

Z Crawleyc de Kock b Philander41500
D P Sibleyc de Kock b Rabada347670
J L Denlyb Maharaj3813050
J E Rootc de Kock b Nortje354950
B A Stokesc Elgar b Nortje477761
O J D Pope6114470
J C Buttlerc de Kock b Pretorius292741
S M Curranb Pretorius91320
D M Bessc de Kock b Philander0100
S C J Broadb Rabada1300
J M Andersonc van der Dussen b Rabada41700
Extras4b 1lb 0 1w 1nb7 
Totalfor 1026991.5 overs
V D Philander163462
K Rabada193683
A Nortje182562
K A Maharaj276681
D Pretorius115262

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