Kagiso Rabada completed the second-best bowling figures in South African Test history © Getty Images
Kagiso Rabada completed a dream sequence with 13 wickets in the match as South Africa thumped England by 280 runs in the final Test at Centurion. England won the series 2-1, and can claim the bragging rights, but South Africa have their first Test win in 10 outings and evidence that the future is not necessarily as bleak as has been suggested.
South Africa’s victory was a convincing one, a splendid recovery after their defeats in Durban and Johannesburg. Most pride of all will come in the feat of Rabada, only the third South African to take so many wickets in a Test. He finished with 13 for 144 in the match, pronouncing that he has the capability to become the inspiration in South Africa’s attack for many years to come.
From the start of their innings, England’s task was to try to bat long and hope that South Africa’s attack fell apart in front of their eyes. Kyle Abbott was carrying a hamstring injury, Rabada had borne a heavy workload in the first innings, and the unpredictability of Morne Morkel meant that he was liable to go haywire if left to carry the pace bowling alone.
It all proved a hollow theory. Little went right for England for the outset. They lost three wickets in 21 overs on the fourth evening and capsized completely on the final morning, their last seven wickets disappearing for 49 runs in 13.4 overs.
Full report to follow
David Hopps is a general editor at ESPNcricinfo @davidkhopps
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Source: ESPN Crickinfo