South Africa surely can’t win this Test anymore. All they can do is try to bat as long as possible and hope it’s good enough to force a draw.
Their chances of a positive result in the New Year’s Test were viciously snatched from their grasp as England massacred the bowlers in a brutal exhibition of masterful, aggressive batting.
South Africa are 24-1 at tea after the unnecessary run-out of Stiaan van Zyl for four.
England declared on 629-6 after Ben Stokes’s blistering innings of 258 off 198 balls came to a close when he was run out, despite being dropped by AB de Villiers. As soon as Jonny Bairstow reached his maiden 150 Alastair Cook called them in as England are confident of only batting once in this game.
Their partnership of 399 was finally broken when Stokes got himself run out while watching how AB de Villiers dropped the easiest of catches off Kagiso Rabada’s bowling. However, De Villiers reacted quickly enough to have a throw at the stumps as Stokes was stuck outside the crease, ball-watching.
Stokes and Bairstow’s partnership is the highest for any wicket scored in South Africa and the highest partnership for the sixth wicket in Test history.
England’s total of 629 is also the highest ever score at Newlands, surpassing the previous best of 559 achieved in 1938.
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