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South Africa strike early after setting a 382-run target

South Africa strike early after setting a 382-run target
Hashim Amla (left) and Temba Bavuma (right) rescued the South African innings with a 117-run stand.
©REUTERS / Action Images

South Africa 475 & 248-5 dec (Amla 96) v
England 342 & 52-3 (Rabada 2-15)
Fourth Test, Centurion, day four

South Africa dismissed the England top order cheaply and left them struggling at 52 for three after setting a target of 382 runs with the help of a patient 96-run knock from Hashim Amla and an unbeaten fifty from Temba Bavuma on day four of the fourth Test match in Centurion.

South Africa continued their second innings at the overnight score of 42 for one.

England were right on the money as James Anderson (3-47) struck twice in the fifth over of the day to dismiss Stephen Cook (25) and AB de Villiers (0).

Stephen was caught behind while de Villiers perished lbw. It was the South African captain’s first pair in Test cricket.

Amla (96) and JP Duminy (29) staged a rescue act by adding 57 runs for the fourth wicket. After an 87-minute stay at the crease, Duminy feathered an edge to the keeper off Ben Stokes (1-36).

In his next over, Stokes rapped Bavuma (78 not out) on the pads. England reviewed the not-out decision but the ball was missing the stumps.

A few minutes before lunch, Amla completed his fifty and took South Africa to 121 for four at the end of the first session.

After lunch, Amla and Bavuma continued to bat with caution without taking many risks in the first hour.

With dark clouds gathering overhead, Bavuma reached his fifty in 118 balls. Amla and Bavuma shared a 117-run stand for the fifth wicket.

With Amla four runs short of his hundred, South Africa went into the tea with the score at 223 for four.

In the first over of the final session, Amla survived a caught behind appeal but perished in the same over from Stuart Broad (1-33) giving Jonny Bairstow a simple catch.

A few overs later, the rain came down and the players were rushed off the field. The play was interrupted for more than an hour and South Africa declared when the game resumed.

England had a target of 382 runs to win the match. Anderson was the best bowler with three wickets while Broad and Stokes had a wicket each.

Rabada (2-15), South Africa’s hero with the ball in the first innings struck in his second over to dismiss Alex Hales (1) lbw.

Two overs later, England lost Alastair Cook (5) with Morne Morkel (1-12) taking a fantastic one-handed return catch.

England continued to slide further as Rabada got Nick Compton (6) to play at a full delivery and induced an edge that was caught by the keeper. Compton’s desperate review only affirmed the umpire’s decision.

In the 13th over, Quinton de Kock missed a stumping chance to dismiss Joe Root (19 not out).

Three overs later, Root attempted to sweep Dane Piedt (0-7) and was struck on the pads. After the appeal was turned down, South Africa reviewed only for the replays to confirm that the ball was missing the stumps.

England ended the day at 52 for three with Root and James Taylor (19 not out) at the crease, needing 330 more runs to win the game. 

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