Despite a strong resistance by Dane Paterson and Keshav Maharaj, England registered an emphatic an innings and 53 runs win on the fifth and final day of 3rd Test match played at ST George, Port Elizabeth on Monday. With this win, England have earned 30 points in the latest ICC Test Championship points table.
Starting on the overnight score of 102 for 6, South Africa lost an early wicket of Vernon Philander in the very first over by Stuart Broad. Kagiso Rabada impressed with his defence technique and frustrated the England bowlers. He and Maharaj added 26 runs for the 8th wicket. Anrich Nortje showed some solid defence technique and was dismissed for 5 runs. England captain Joe Root took the 2nd new ball after the 80th over.
Keshav Maharaj and Dane Peterson enjoyed themselves with positive stroke play. Maharaj hit 28 runs off Joe Root over and reached his fifty off 90 balls. Paterson also played some lovely strokes which frustrated the England bowlers. A brilliant run out by Sam Curran ended Maharaj innings for 71. Maharaj and Paterson added 99 runs for the final wicket. England won the match by an innings and 53 runs to take a 2-1 lead in the 4 match Test series.
It was an amazing batting performance by England who were struggling at 148 for 4. Ollie Pope and Ben Stokes brilliance took England to safety and helped them to push on to score big runs. Ben Stokes 120 and Ollie Pope 135* made sure that the visitors declare their innings on 499 for 9.
The match was curtailed by rain, but the England bowlers kept it tight and did not allow South African batsmen to score runs easily. Dom Bess was simply sensational in the first innings taking 5 wickets. On the 4th day, England polished off the tail and enforced the follow on. Deciding to follow on, Joe Root was brilliant and kept the pressure on.
England 499 for 9 in 152 overs (Ollie Pope 135*, Ben Stokes 120, Keshav Maharaj 5/180, Kagiso Rabada 2/97) beat South Africa 209 in 86.4 overs (Quinton de Kock 63 Elgar 35, Dom Bess 5/51) and 237 in 88. 5 overs (Keshav Maharaj 71, Paterson 39*, Joe Root 4/87, Mark Wood 3/32) by an innings and 53 runs.
For his brilliant 135*, Ollie Pope was awarded the man of the match. The fourth and final Test match will be played from 24th January at Johannesburg.