Ben Stokes surge sees England claim thrilling victory to level South Africa series

By Sports Desk January 07, 2020

Ben Stokes was England's hero once again as England took five wickets in the final session to win a thrilling second Test against South Africa in Cape Town that levelled the series at 1-1.

The tourists won by 189 runs, claiming the 10th wicket in the Proteas' second innings with just over half an hour left to play on day five, as Stokes, who had previously shone with the bat, took the last three wickets in dramatic fashion.

With 26 overs remaining, it looked like the hosts would bat out the day for a draw with Quinton de Kock and Rassie van der Dussen well set and their team on 237-5

But De Kock fell for 50 after a poor shot off Joe Denly before Van der Dussen's 194-minute, 140-ball innings for just 17 ended tamely when he was caught off Stuart Broad down the legside. 

Debutant Pieter Malan made 84 after surviving for 288 deliveries, but Stokes helped England prevail and gave coach Chris Silverwood his first Test win in four attempts despite largely being without the injured James Anderson after lunch.

There are two more Tests to come in the four-match series, with the next contest in Port Elizabeth starting on January 16.

Starting the day on 126-2, Keshav Maharaj soon fell for two in the third over, Anderson dismissing him plumb lbw, with the nightwatchman not even waiting for the umpire's finger.

That brought Proteas captain Faf du Plessis to the crease for what the hosts hoped would be a match-saving partnership with Malan.

The skipper, so often his side's final-innings hero, moved on to 19 but got out in poor fashion, giving his wicket away poorly when he swept straight to Denly at square leg off Dom Bess.

That meant South Africa were four down at lunch and the crucial wicket of Malan early in the second session, Sam Curran forcing an edge to second slip where Stokes was waiting gratefully, appeared to have the tourists in control.

The hosts desperately needed a partnership and it arrived through De Kock and Van der Dussen, who managed well as the 32 overs after lunch went for just 55 runs and one wicket.

But just as it looked like South Africa were comfortable, De Kock, who brought up his fifty with a four off Curran, could not believe what he had done when he sent a long hop from Denly straight to Zak Crawley.

England then saw a field change pay immediate dividends, Anderson catching Van der Dussen at leg gully before Stokes (3-35) found the edge of Dwaine Pretorius with captain Joe Root taking a smart catch at slip.

Anrich Nortje went for a golden duck next ball, Crawley keeping his cool in the slips to make the catch at the second attempt while on the ground.

And Vernon Philander was the last man to fall as he fended Stokes to gully, ending the retiring star's attempt to see South Africa through to the close at his home stadium.

Related items

  • Lara was shocked by jeering Jamaica crowd – rates shot-filled Sabina 213 as most memorable innings Lara was shocked by jeering Jamaica crowd – rates shot-filled Sabina 213 as most memorable innings

    Legendary West Indies batsman, Brian Lara, has pointed to a performance that emanated from one of the uglier, darker moments of a largely sparkling career as one of his most memorable.

    In one of a few instances the batting star was not greeted by applause and gestures of widespread adoration on his sojourn to the crease, Lara was booed by the Sabina Park crowd when strode out for the second Test of the 1999 Australia tour of the West Indies.

    During a tumultuous period for the Windies, the issue for some home fans stemmed from what they believed to be disrespect shown to bowling legend Courtney Walsh in what they deemed to be a hostile takeover of the captaincy by the Trinidadian.  Walsh, who was appointed captain in 1994, served as captain for 22 Test matches before being replaced by Lara in 1998.  On the back of a heavy loss to Australia in the first Test and having also previously been whitewashed by South Africa, The Prince found himself occupying the unusual status of public enemy.

    His response, a classy, shot-filed 213, which would go on to underpin a massive 10 wicket win at Sabina Park to level the series, it must be said, went a long way in lightening the mood.

    “Everyone says the 153 was second maybe to Sir Don Bradman’s (Against England at Melbourne in 1936-1937), maybe post-war, one of the better innings, but a week before that I was in Jamaica where we played against Australia in that second Test match,” Lara told 7Cricket.

    “We came off scoring 51 in the fourth innings in Trinidad and I stood there in Jamaica, I was given the captaincy for two Test matches, on probation, never before had that happened in the history of West Indies cricket…that 213 in Jamaica was for me (special) in terms of not just batsmanship but my inner strength to come out of that situation I was in,” he went on.

    “I was facing expulsion as the captain, of course, I was going to be playing, the captaincy was not that important to me that I wouldn’t play, but the threat of the expulsion and the fact that everyone was sort of jeering against me, in the Caribbean, was just unbelievable.”

  • 'You have to have belief' - WI skipper Mohammed says team inspired by India shock win over Australia 'You have to have belief' - WI skipper Mohammed says team inspired by India shock win over Australia

    West Indies captain for the upcoming One Day International (ODI) series against Bangladesh, Jason Mohammed, says the team will draw inspiration from India’s surprise triumph over Australia, at the much-vaunted Gabba fortress, on Monday.

    The relatively inexperienced India team ended a 32-year unbeaten run for the Aussies on the back of a stellar innings from Rishabh Pant.  The team’s performance broke Australian hearts, and records as well, with the mammoth target of 328 runs representing the highest ever successful runs chase at the venue.  It was achieved with 3 wickets remaining.

    Heading into the series as huge underdogs, the team owed a large part of the victory to resilience, Shubman Gill's crucial 91 and the dogged determination of Cheteshwar Pujara who faced 211 deliveries and 10 body blows to defend the Border-Gavaskar trophy on a dramatic final day.

    For, Mohammed, who will lead a hastily assembled and likewise inexperienced squad against Bangladesh, starting on Wednesday, there is plenty about the India performance to draw encouragement from.

    “It’s obviously something we will look to.  It depends on the day and how you play,” Mohammed told members of the media via a press conference call on Tuesday.

    “A lot of the guys will be making their debut, but once you have that belief and belief within the team that you can do well and that you can win games then these things are achievable and it showed in the India versus Australia series,” he added.

    “We have the same mindset.  We are just looking to play some good cricket starting tomorrow and hopefully, the results will be on our side as well.”

     

  • Kohli, Ishant and Hardik back in India squad for first two England Tests Kohli, Ishant and Hardik back in India squad for first two England Tests

    Captain Virat Kohli, Ishant Sharma and Hardik Pandya are back in the India squad for the first two Tests of the upcoming home series against England.

    Just hours after securing a thrilling 2-1 win over Australia, India confirmed the selection for the start of their next four-Test series, which is due to begin on February 5 in Chennai.

    Kohli had to return home from the Australia tour in December due to the birth of his first child but will be back to lead the team against England.

    Also returning is Ishant, who was ruled out before the trip to Australia despite recovering from a side strain that troubled him towards the end of the Indian Premier League season.

    Ishant is just three appearances away from playing 100 Tests for India.

    Like Kohli, Hardik was also initially in the travelling party in Australia but flew home after the limited-overs leg of the tour.

    His inclusion in the squad comes less than a week after the death of his father.

    Along with the regular squad, selectors have also named Srikar Bharat, Abhimanyu Easwaran, Shahbaz Nadeem, Rahul Chahar and Priyank Panchal on a standby list.

     

    India: Virat Kohli, Rohit Sharma, Mayank Agarwal, Shubman Gill, Cheteshwar Pujara, Ajinkya Rahane, KL Rahul, Hardik Pandya, Rishabh Pant, Wriddhiman Saha, Ravichandran Ashwin, Kuldeep Yadav, Axar Patel, Washington Sundar, Ishant Sharma, Jasprit Bumrah, Mohammed Siraj, Shardul Thakur.

© 2020 SportsMaxTV All Rights Reserved.