fenced to gully! STOKES DOES IT!! Fierce length, rising like the kraken, smashes the upraised glove and the catch is gleefully accepted! Philander's last stand is in a losing cause, England succeed in sacking Fortress Newlands, and it is their man of 2019 who brings them a first victory of 2020
5.45pm: Ay caramba! We've had a Cape Town special, and no mistake. Thanks for keeping us company right up until the end. Matt's report will do the day full justice, I'm sure, and we'll have plenty to come from George and Firdose. The third Test starts down in Port Elizabeth next Thursday, so stick that in your diary (all five days). Until then, it's goodbye from myself, Miller, Valkerie and Thilak. Cheerio!
5.25pm: Bottle that feeling, keep it for a rainy day. Test cricket, man's greatest invention. (For those wishing to keep surfing the wave of adrenalin, there's a T20I going on over in Indore.) Right, shall we get on with the presentations? South Africa captain Faf du Plessis: "What an advertisement for Test cricket, sad we were on the losing side. All I asked was that we fought, unfortunately there had to be a winner and credit to England, they had a bit more in the tank. Variety in the wicket, it got a bit more flat, but big series you want two teams to bash it out for five days and the next Test should be very exciting. [Positives?] What pleases me is that we've found someone at the top of the order in Pieter Malan, knows his game and he's stepped in and played one of the great innings. We've shown that we've got another opener who can play Test cricket. Not where we need to be from a batting point of view. [Character] Most teams would come when the chips are down and fall after lunch, for me this was a huge step in the right direction, showing character and fight. Today we lost in the right way, we fought to the end, and I'm proud of that. [Third Test] That's the great thing, everywhere you go the conditions are different and we have to adapt. We know what the challenges are at PE, luckily there's a bit of a break, two tough matches in a row. Regroup, train harder and make sure we improve. That's what we're trying to do as a young unit and I think that's what you see."
England captain Joe Root: "Fantastic, brilliant performance by the whole group, showed great amount of character and patience and a lot of belief. Credit to SA, they threw a lot back at us and made it hard for us. We had an unbelievable 12th man, the crowd's support, and we're proud with the win. Lot of young players, to come in at the start of their career, opportunity to learn and keep improving going into the next game. [Most pleasing?] The way we handled some difficult situations, under pressure, but some individual stood up and put in performances. The way Jimmy bowled, Sam Curran changed the game, Bessy controlled the rate, and then you've got guys like Ben Stokes who can turn the game for you, along with a brilliant hundred from Dom. [Leg gully catch?] Credit to Stuart, put a guy in the right place and, thankfully, safe hands Jimmy Anderson. [Stokes?] You can put him in every situation, plays 100% for the team and he's brilliant role model. Brilliant senior player, keeps running in and he can change a game with the bat. He's world class and deserves all the plaudits."
Ben Stokes is Man of the Match (and tries to drag Dom Sibley up with him): "Yeah, I think I came in in a do-or-die situation and I thought Dom put in the hard yards to get us in the position to win. He's the Man of the Match, full credit to him, first Test match hundred at the most beautiful ground in the world. Credit to everyone, we've got three guys who are 21 and had to step up, Sam, Zak and Ollie, the future looks great and hopefully this is a stepping stone. We've shown a huge amount of character. [Series 1-1] Brilliant, when you have series the first two games are results it makes things interesting. [Final session] It's why five-day cricket should always be around. Game's like these are unforgettable, we'll remember it for a long time, so will SA and it will go down as one of the greats."
5.10pm: What a Test match... A five-day Test match, no less. In the end, South Africa were left stranded with a puncture a few hundred yards from the heartbreak hotel, dismissed inside the final hour after battling for more than 130 overs in the fourth innings. Ben Stokes, as so often, was the firestarter for England, who managed to round up five wickets after tea and level the series at 1-1 with two to play. England's players are going on a lap of the ground, taking it all in - the last time they won on this ground was 1957, remember. Huge English support in the stands, and in the end they were given plenty to cheer about, though spare a thought for the likes of Pieter Malan, Quinton de Kock and Rassie van der Dussen, who combined to keep the tourists at bay for most of the day. Vernon Philander, too, is out on the field with his wife and child, taking a tour of his home ground as a Test player for the last time. Not how he would have wanted it to finish, but there's time to script a better farewell yet, in Port Elizabeth and Johannesburg.
"Very special," says Stuart Broad, who claimed the key wicket of van der Dussen in the final session, "the crowd were exceptional. An incredible day's play and a great Test match. Incredibly discipline from SA but we kept saying one bit of magic and we can apply some pressure."
Here's Zain Munawari: "Benjamin Stokes. What a player!!!! Whenever his team needs him, he rises and delivers.... Once a legend always a legend....."
"Well done, Stokes - but I was wearing my lucky cricket cufflinks at work today, so I have to take some of the credit." It was a team effort, Enjay
This is from Simon: "select company - 6 catches, 100 runs and 3 wickets in a match...."
hits a good length in the channel, 136kph and this one comes back with the arm, again he's able to leave
length outside off, 142kph/88mph and holding its line, no need to follow this one
short of a length around off stump and Big Vern shows it a stoic straight bat in defence
Stokes continues, nine overs to go...
"Will they extend another 20 minutes of play, if these 2 battle it out for next 10 overs?" Nope, Naveen. That'll be it
length ball, spinning through past the bat as Rabada drops back on off stump... safely negotiated
floated up full a touch wide and this is stabbed away through point, they won't take one
full on off stump, lines it up to solidly block once again
flighted, again Rabada taps it away coolly into the off side
lobbed up full and tapped away as he pushes half forward
Six men around the bat
round the wicket, tossed up and blocked on off stump
Ten overs to go, KG on strike to the spinner
"Funny how a day 5 battle can inch along for most of the day, then suddenly explode in a few balls." Delayed gratification is the best, Peter. But it's still being delayed, as far as England are concerned...
pitched up on off stump, 143kph/89mph and Philander blocks it to the man in the covers
Five slips, short leg, short extra cover
digs in the bouncer, wide of the off stump and Philander sways out of the way
short ball over middle and off, 138kph/86mph and he defends calmly
good length and squirted away through midwicket with a close bat face, they take one
"Six catches and two dismissals as bowler," yelps Marcus Streets. "Where does that put Stokes?" Plus that blistering 70-odd in the second innings...
bangs down the bumper, 132kph/82mph and sailing through above the ducking Rabada
round the wicket, back of a length and seaming in to hit the thigh pad
Down to 11 overs, Stokes looking for the one wicket England require...
Here's Rob: "Hi Alan. Re' Stokes. As Gooch said to Botham all those years ago - 'Who writes your scripts?'" It was a Beef-tastic intervention
tossed up, bit of width and Philander crunches it through the covers for four... England not too bothered about that, Philander ran the one hoping that it wouldn't go
flighted, spinning in and defended
"Let's see if he wants a single, lads," chirps Buttler
pushed through outside off, Philander steers it into the turf wide of slip
flighted, spinning in and Philander is well forward to smother it