England’s cricketers have clinched a famous series victory over South Africa thanks to a scintillating performance from Mark Wood in the final Test in Johannesburg.
South Africa has not been a happy hunting ground for England of late but, having been soundly beaten in the first Test, they roared back into life to win the following three.
They even managed to storm fortress Cape Town as the myth and legend surrounding South Africa in home series’ crumbled.
Ben Stokes’ fine form continued apace as he became the first-ever English player to score 300 plus runs, take 10 wickets and swallow 10 catches in a four-match series.
It was Wood who took all the plaudits at the Bull Ring though, dominating with the ball while chipping in with some handy contributions with bat in hand.
His searing pace was simply too much for a floundering South African batting line-up as the Protea’s ultimately folded.
However, it was his antics with the willow in the first innings that saw England to such a dominant position as he slapped the hapless South African attack to all parts.
Wood’s last wicket partnership with Stuart Broad took the game away from the hosts as England set themselves up for another big win.
The Durham man then followed it up with a fiery performance with the ball, taking five wickets to skittle South Africa for a paltry 183.
Joe Root then sent out the troops to drive home the advantage as England rattled off a rapid 248 – complete with some lusty blows from Wood – to extend their lead to 465.
South Africa’s openers got starts but it was a superb innings from Rassie van der Dussen that held England’s victory march at bay.
It was the first time in a long time that a South African batsman had looked comfortable at the crease as Van der Dussen countered, displaying some joyous stroke play in the process.
However, when he fell two runs short of his century, it turned into a bit of a procession as South Africa slumped from 235 for four to 274 with Wood cleaning up the tail.
After their massive win in Port Elizabeth and fine performance in Cape Town, the 191-run win at the famous Wanderers Stadium was the perfect way to cap off what has been a fantastic tour for England.
Unsurprisingly, Ben Stokes was named man of the series while Wood took home the man-of-the-match award.
England will now shift their focus to the limited-overs campaign, with three ODI’s and three T20 internationals lined up.