The Proteas have moved to 44-3 in their second innings at tea time on the fourth day of the third Test against England at St George’s Park in Port Elizabeth, still trailing the visitors’ first innings total by 240 runs.
Following a long rain delay, the heavens eventually started clear a little bit in PE, much to the delight of the English bowlers, who would’ve been relishing the opportunity to bowl in the overcast conditions and especially after the emphatic display by Stuart Broad and Sam Curran on Sunday morning.
The pair tormented the remaining Proteas batsmen when play got underway in the first session with Broad picking up three scalps and Curran getting the valuable breakthrough of Quinton de Kock, who was on 63 as South Africa were dismissed for 209.
England captain Joe Root didn’t hesitate to enforce the follow-on and openers, Dean Elgar and Pieter Malan got to 15-0 before the rain interrupted play and lunch was subsequently taken.
When play got underway again in the afternoon Mark Wood came steaming in and produced a beaut of a delivery when he knocked Elgar’s stumps out of the ground.
Elgar would’ve been hoping to stick around and fight it out, as he often does, to keep the Proteas in some sort of a position where they can salvage something from the test match.
Instead he was undone by a ripper from Wood for 13.
Zubayr Hamza was the next man in but he never looked comfortable before Wood nicked him to Jos Butler for only 2 runs.
His disappointing series with the bat will certainly be under the spotlight leading up to the third and final Test in Johannesburg.
Malan offered some resistance until he was trapped in front by Root for 12 as the Proteas top-order crumbled once again.
Captain Faf du Plessis, who is on 12 and with a lot to prove with the bat as well, will have to lead the fight in the final session of the day, alongside Rassie van Der Dussen.