Ben Stokes and Jonny Bairstow humiliate spineless South Africa on Day 2
Ben Stokes played the innings of his lifetime, bludgeoning his way to one of the greatest attacking Test innings ever, before also claiming Dean Elgar’s wicket with the ball. Stokes’ 258 from 198 balls, a knock consisting of 30 fours and 11 sixes, was part of a 399-run partnership which took England’s score to 629/6 before they declared.
Jonny Bairstow, who also put on his maiden Test ton, was at the crease on 150* when the declaration came, forcing South Africa to bat 43 overs on Day 2. England struck their second-highest partnership in Test history, 399 in 59 overs, making 312 for 1 off 38.5 overs in the day – a tall order even in limited overs cricket.
The South African bowlers had some respite when the declaration came, but the way they started their reply was a sign that Stokes’ assault had scarred them – compounding their woes in the Test arena.
Stiaan van Zyl was run out going for a suicidal run, and Ben Stokes returned to haunt, when he picked up the other opener in the 25th over. AB de Villiers and Hashim Amla, the two most experienced batsmen in their ranks, stuck out for the rest of the day, to end the day’s proceedings with them trailing England by 488 runs, and virtually playing to avoid following on.
Brief Scores – South Africa 141/2 (Amla 64, Elgar 44; Stokes 1/20) trail England (Stokes 258, Bairstow 150*; Rabada 3/175) by 488 runs at end of Day 2.