Manchester — SA’s marathon tour of England ended at Old Trafford on Monday in what has become the unhappy familiarity of defeat.
The visitors‚ who played their first match here on May 19‚ lost the one-day and T20 series‚ and failed to escape the group stage of the Champions Trophy.
On Monday the Test series‚ too‚ was tossed onto the scrapheap — England cleaned them up with a day to spare in the fourth match of the series to complete a 3-1 drubbing.
SA‚ who needed 380 to win‚ were dismissed for 202 to go down by 177 runs with Moeen Ali claiming 5/69.
The off-spinner took all of his wickets in the space of 40 deliveries‚ his bowling the major factor in SA’s death rattle of seven wickets for 39 runs.
The visitors crashed to 40/3 at lunch‚ lost three more wickets in less than five overs before tea‚ and their last four inside six overs of the third session.
SA needed 17 balls of the day’s play to end England’s second innings‚ which resumed on 224/8‚ at 243. Morné Morkel claimed both wickets‚ Stuart Broad caught at point and James Anderson at short leg‚ to finish with 4/41.
It took England 22 balls to open the first crack in the visitors’ defence: Broad found Dean Elgar’s edge and the catch flew into the gloves of wicketkeeper Jonny Bairstow.
The struggling Heino Kuhn‚ his left hamstring heavily strapped and his movement restricted‚ had insult added to his injury when England’s review after Anderson’s appeal for his wicket — for caught behind — was unsuccessful.
"I don’t want to be disrespectful‚ but England have wasted a review‚" Michael Vaughan said. "I mean‚ it’s Heino Kuhn."
Four overs later Kuhn proved Vaughan’s point when he steered Anderson to first slip.
What became the last ball before lunch was ruled‚ with technology’s help‚ to have grazed Temba Bavuma’s outside edge and earned a wicket for Toby Roland-Jones.
For all but the last 29 balls of the 36 overs bowled after lunch‚ SA had reasons to be not entirely despondent. They were 163/3‚ or still a long way from victory but significantly better off than they had been at lunch.
Faf du Plessis had joined Hashim Amla‚ and stability came with him. But‚ with the partnership worth 123‚ Moeen trapped Amla in front for 83.
In his next over Moeen induced a rash drive from Quinton de Kock that was caught in the slips. Theunis de Bruyn edged the last ball of the over into the cordon to complete a raid by Moeen that saw him take 3/5 in 11 deliveries.
Du Plessis went for 60 an ominous 13 balls after tea‚ caught behind off Anderson driving at a wide one‚ to reduce SA to 183/7. And that was just about that.