PORT ELIZABETH (Reuters) – English spinner Dom Bess did its first five-gate test on Saturday before continuing drizzle on the third day of the third test on Saturday threatened to loosen England's stranglehold on South Africa.
England's Dom Bess celebrates with his teammates after taking the wicket from South Africa's Rassie van der Dussen REUTERS / Siphiwe Sibeko
The rain reduced the morning game at St. George’s Park to an hour and 45 minutes, and the match did not have to continue until the afternoon.
Bess raged through the home team's top position, leaving South Africa on 113 runs for five gates, still 386 behind England's formidable first innings of 499 for nine.
The 22-year-old had scored two goals overnight when South Africa lost wickets in the dark at the end of day two and continued where he left off on Saturday.
Dean Elgar was the first to be released and converted the ball to Ollie Pope, who had 35 runs behind, followed by captain Francois du Plessis, whose tenure as captain of the South African team is now seriously in question.
He continued his poor form by crossing two boundaries and then coming to Bess in the same way as Elgar, only doing eight runs.
Bess then saw Captain Joe Root drop night watchman Anrich Nortje on the first slip, and Pope failed to take Rassie van der Dussen half a chance.
But Bess & # 39; fifth wicket came two balls later to celebrate happily as Van der Dussen continued to play and played 24 bowling.
Bess was initially not selected for the tour, but was flown to South Africa just before Christmas when a virus hit the camp in England.
He had numbers of 5-41 when lunch was scheduled, with Nortje not missing on the 14th and Quinton de Kock not yet scoring.
It continued to drizzle during the scheduled afternoon session, and the covers came off three times, but were quickly put back on.
Having received a whipping sentence from the English batsmen in the first two days, South Africa must now pass the test to avoid defeat, similar to the last test in Cape Town when England celebrated their fifth victory in the last hour.
England now have the upper hand with a 1-1 draw in the series.
The fourth and final test will take place in Johannesburg next week.
Reporting by Mark Gleeson; Cut by Hugh Lawson