South Africa beat England by an innings and 12 runs inside three days to go 1-0 up in the three-match Test series and consolidate their position at the top of the ICC World Test Championship Standings.
What turned out to be a rosy day did not begin great for South Africa with Kagiso Rabada dismissed by a stunning catch from Stuart Broad at mid-wicket. Maco Jansen found support from Anrich Nortje, but the former couldn’t complete his maiden Test fifty as he fell two runs short of the landmark. Nrotje remained unbeaten on 28 as South Africa put up a comfortable lead after the first innings. England minimised the damage early on day three, but the same, however, would not turn true for their batting.
Elgar pulled a rabbit out of his hat when he gave Keshav Maharaj a bowl before the sheen had worn off the new ball. Coming in to bowl in the eighth over of England’s innings, the left-arm spinner prized out two big wickets before the lunch break to put South Africa firmly in control. Both Zak Crawley and Ollie Pope, the first innings hero, were trapped in front as South Africa piled on the pressure on the hosts.
While it was Lungi Ngidi who put South Africa well and truly ahead with the big scalp of Joe Root shortly after lunch, it was Nortje who destroyed England’s hopes in the Test in a 10-ball burst that yielded three wickets and leaked zero runs. Nortje sent back Jonny Bairstow for the second time in the Test match and then had Alex Lees and Ben Foakes dismissed next over to complete the demolition job.
South Africa sealed a victory without having to bat again as they continued their domination at Lord’s since readmission. The visitors have now won five of their seven Tests at the venue since 1992, losing only once. The win put South Africa one step closer to the ICC World Test Championship finals next year. They are on top of the standings with six wins and two losses this cycle, a win percentage of 75%. Australia and Sri Lanka follow them in the table, with England languishing at seventh spot with eight losses this cycle.