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England fall flat in Morkel combat

cricket Updated: Jan 17, 2010 23:14 IST
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Morne Morkel took three wickets in seven balls as South Africa swept to a series-levelling victory on the fourth day of the fourth and final Test at the Wanderers Stadium on Sunday.

South Africa won by an innings and 74 runs when England were bowled out for 169 in their second innings in the last over before lunch.

Only Paul Collingwood stood firm for England, scoring 71 on a morning during which seven wickets fell for 121 runs.

Morkel finished with four for 59. He and Dale Steyn shared 14 wickets in a match dominated by the fast bowlers. They also shared the man of the match award. England captain Andrew Strauss admitted: “Smith and his team didn’t give us a sniff in this Test match.”

England went into the match 1-0 up in the series after winning by an innings and 98 runs in the second Test in Durban. The first and third Tests in Centurion and Cape Town were drawn, with England nine down in their second innings on both occasions. South African captain Graeme Smith said: “I’m proud of the way the guys performed. We were under pressure coming into this game.

“We got close in two of the games but credit must go to Andrew and England for their resilient performances in Centurion and Cape Town and the way they played in Durban.”

Strauss said he was disappointed with the way his team had performed in their final match. “But I’m very proud of the way the team performed over the ten weeks we’ve been here. To win the one-day series was a huge achievement and to halve the Test series against one of the best teams in the world.” South African wicketkeeper Mark Boucher and England off-spinner Graeme Swann shared the man of the series award.

Collingwood batted aggressively at the start of the day, scoring most of the runs and taking most of the strike as he and Kevin Pietersen added 36 runs in 40 minutes to the overnight total of 48 for three.

South African newcomer, left-arm fast bowler Wayne Parnell, made the breakthrough when Pietersen chased a wide delivery, slanting away from him, to be caught behind by Boucher for 12.