The Proteas will need to smash the Old Trafford record of England’s 294-4 against New Zealand in 2008 to win the match and level the series.
And England aren’t quite done yet with the bat either, as Moeen Ali will look to continue an already spirit-crushing 59-ball 67 and extend England’s 360-run lead in the morning session on day four.
When England were on 153-7, the Proteas were right back in it, trailing the hosts by 289 runs and quietly hopeful of turning things around. But then Dean Elgar dropped Moeen in the slips when he was on six, and he proceeded to smash eight fours and three sixes as England climbed to 224-8.
The South African bowling attack were in fine form on day three, as they have been throughout the match, but they weren’t helped in the field, with numerous spilled chances going against the likes of Morne Morkel and Keshav Maharaj. Those half-chances, and occasionally simple chances, needed to be taken.
England already have enough on the board, but they’ll want to take the game completely away from the Proteas. Day four is expected to be clearer than initially thought, and despite rain disrupting the evening session on day three, extra time will be allocated this evening.
The Proteas can only even consider winning this game if they take the last two wickets without Moeen doing any more damage. But an extremely challenging pitch awaits them, with Keshav Maharaj getting plenty of purchase out of the footmarks, while the pacemen are getting the occasional deliveries to keep low. It’s not impossible, but it will be record-breaking.
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