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England ruin Vernon Philander's farewell, win final Test to clinch series 3-1 over South Africa

South Africa was all out for 274 in its second innings on the fourth day at the Wanderers, way off its world-record target of 466.

AP AP
Johannesburg Published on: January 27, 2020 20:58 IST
England's bowler Mark Wood, center, reacts after dismissing
Image Source : AP

England's bowler Mark Wood, center, reacts after dismissing South Africa's batsman Rassie van der Dussen, right, for 98 runs on day four of the fourth cricket test match between South Africa and England at the Wanderers stadium in Johannesburg

England blew through South Africa's resistance in the end to win the fourth and final test by 191 runs on Monday and clinch a convincing 3-1 series victory.

South Africa was all out for 274 in its second innings on the fourth day at the Wanderers, way off its world-record target of 466.

Mark Wood was England's bowling hero with 4-54 in the second innings and nine wickets in the match. Wood clinched it with the wicket of Anrich Nortje, caught behind by wicketkeeper Jos Buttler. The decision didn't immediately go England's way, but the tourists reviewed and the TV replays confirmed their triumph.

The players were already celebrating anyway.

Star allrounder Ben Stokes proved his worth on the final day, as he's done all series, with crucial breakthroughs to get rid of stubborn South Africa opener Dean Elgar (24) and captain Faf du Plessis (35). The wicket of du Plessis broke South Africa's most meaningful partnership.

Du Plessis and Rassie van der Dussen put on 92 in a period of fight from the home team in the afternoon but England removed both in the space of an over just before tea and surged to victory from there.

Stokes roared in and his delivery kept low to bowl du Plessis. Van der Dussen was out for 98 — agonizingly short of a maiden test century — when he lofted a catch to Stuart Broad off Wood.

England finished it off effectively, taking the last seven wickets for just 87.

Joe Root said through the series that an England victory would be the most significant in his three-year reign.

The margin of victory was also significant. It's the most convincing performance by an England team in South Africa in more than 100 years, since England won a five-test series 4-0 in 1914, six months before the outbreak of World War I.

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