England stand only four wickets away from taking a 2-1 lead in the 4-match Test series against South Africa as they reduced the hosts to 102/6 in the follow-on innings. Resuming the 4th day on 208/6, the South Africans were bundled out for only 209 as they lost their last four wickets for one run. Joe Root’s off-spin came handy for England in the 2nd innings who claimed his Test career’s maiden 4-fer. No player barring Faf du Plessis (36) in South Africa’s top-six crossed 20 in the 2nd essay.
All the statistical highlights from the 4th day of the Port Elizabeth Test shared between England bowlers:
A rare instance of follow-on at home for South Africa:
2008 – The last instance of South Africa made to follow-on in Test cricket against England was during the 2008 Lord’s Test. For the next 11 years, South Africa didn’t have to follow-on even once but were made to play the follow-on innings for the 3rd time in their last five Test matches.
3 – Only the 3rd time South Africa were made to follow-on in a home Test since their readmission to cricket. The other two instances were against England in the 1999 Durban Test and against Australia in the 2002 Johannesburg Test.
290 – The 290-run lead is the 3rd highest which South Africa conceded in the first innings of a home Test since 1992. Australia took a 493-run lead in the 2002 Johannesburg Test while batting first and a 326-run lead in the first innings of the 1997 Test also in Johannesburg while batting second.
A record collapse:
1 – South Africa lost their last four wickets on 4th day morning while scoring only one run. The fewest runs added by them for losing their last four wickets was 0 runs in their 2nd innings of the 1947 Leeds Test also against England. South Africa lost their lost wickets for just one run during the 1896 Port Elizabeth Test also against England and during the 1957 Cape Town Test against Australia.
4-fer for an England captain:
2006 – The last England skipper to claim a 4-wicket haul in Test cricket before Joe Root was Andrew Flintoff during the 2003 Brisbane Test against Australia (4/99). The last English skipper with a 4-fer in any format was Stuart Broad who took 4/24 against New Zealand in the 2013 Auckland T20I.
1971 – The last England captain before Joe Root to take a Test 4-fer while bowling spin was Ray Illingworth. He recorded figures of 5/70 during the 1971 Test against India at The Oval.
Pope’s rare double:
5 – Ollie Pope is only the 5th player to score a century and claim 5+ catches as a fielder in the same Test match for England. The last of the previous four players with this double was Joe Root during the 2015 Ashes Test match in Nottingham.
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