27 Aug 2022 | 05:56 PM

Ben Stokes leads the way as England crush South Africa to level series

South Africa, the World Test Championship leaders, collapsed against the new ball as they lost their last five wickets for seven runs in 31 balls

England hammered South Africa by an innings and 85 runs to win the second Test at Old Trafford inside three days on Saturday (August 27). The victory, which followed South Africa's almost as crushing innings and 12-run win in the first Test at Lord's, meant England levelled the three-match series at 1-1.

South Africa, 141 for 3 in their second innings at tea, then saw England captain Ben Stokes remove both Rassie van der Dussen (41) and Keegan Petersen (42) for their interval scores. The Proteas, the World Test Championship leaders, then collapsed against the new ball as they lost their last five wickets for seven runs in 31 balls en route to being dismissed for 179.

Recalled seamer Ollie Robinson took 4 for 43 in 15.1 overs and 40-year-old England great James Anderson 3 for 30. Anderson had earlier marked becoming the first man to play 100 Tests on home soil (97 in England, three in Wales) by taking three wickets in South Africa's meager first innings 151 after Proteas captain Dean Elgar surprisingly decided to bat first in bowler-friendly conditions.

This match was a personal triumph for player of the match Stokes, who made 103 -- his first century as England captain -- in a total of 415-9 declared that also featured wicketkeeper Ben Foakes's Test-best 113 not out.

Stokes has now won five of his six Tests as skipper since succeeding Joe Root as England's permanent captain. The third and now deciding Test at the Oval in south London starts on September 8.

Brief scores:

South Africa 151 (Kagiso Rabada 36, Keegan Petersen 21; James Anderson 3 for 32) & 179 (Keegan Petersen 42, Rassie Van der Dussen 41; Ollie Robinson 4 for 43) lost to England 415 for 9 decl. (Ben Foakes 113*, Ben Stokes 103; Anrich Nortje 3 for 82) by an innings and 85 runs.

Player of the match: Ben Stokes

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