Continuing from the carnage on the first day of the Bloemfontein Test, in which they made 428 in 90 overs, South Africa helped themselves to another 145 runs, scoring at a rate of 4.83 runs per over in the 30 overs that they faced on the second day before declaring. Overall, South Africa's innings scoring rate of 4.77 ranks tenth among 576 totals of 500 or more in Test history. Only once has the innings run rate been higher in Tests in South Africa: England plundered 629 at 4.99 in Cape Town in 2016. Gentler batting conditions, perhaps, haven't been gifted by the opposition to any team considering that South Africa's scoring rate is the second-highest of the 66 occasions when a team sent in to bat has scored 500 or more.
Such has been the domination of South Africa's batsmen in this series that their first innings in Potchefstroom and Bloemfontein rank first and fourth, respectively, in terms of the average runs scored per wicket lost in any Test innings in South Africa. In total, South Africa have scored 1069 runs in their first innings in this series, losing only seven wickets in bargain.
Overnight not-out batsmen Hashim Amla and Faf du Plessis got to their hundreds in the first session of play, taking the tally of hundreds in South Africa's innings to four. This is the first instance of a Test innings in South Africa with four individual hundreds and only the second instance for South Africa in any country. The first one had come in the Antigua Test in 2005 when AB de Villiers, Graeme Smith, Jacques Kallis and Ashwell Prince had helped themselves to a century each. This was Amla's 28th Test hundred. It took him past Graeme Smith, and Jacques Kallis with 45 Test hundreds is the only South Africa batsman ahead of him.
Bangladesh had centuries of their own: four Bangladesh bowlers went for over 100 at an economy rates of more than four runs an over in South Africa's first innings, making it only the eighth instance in Test history that four or more bowlers have conceded 100-plus runs at that rate in an innings. The previous such instance had come in the Sharjah Test between Pakistan and New Zealand in 2014-15 when four Pakistan bowlers suffered a similar fate.
Mehidy Hasan Miraz had created the Bangladesh record for conceding the most runs for a bowler going wicketless in an innings, in the Potchefstroom Test. Taiju Islam replaced Mehidy as the specialist spinner in this Test and had a forgettable outing of his own: he conceded 145 runs in a wicketless innings to occupy second place in this list, after Mehidy. But while Mehidy bowled 56 overs in South Africa's first innings and had provided some control with an economy rate of 3.17, Taijul leaked 5.37 runs an over.
The match continued to stay true to its one-sided nature when Bangladesh batted, only this time it was one-sided in favour of the bowling side. Bangladesh were blown away by South Africa for a paltry total of 147 handing the hosts their fifth-highest ever first-innings lead in Tests. The last time South Africa took a bigger lead in a Test match was in Centurion against India when they bundled out the visitors for just 136 runs and replied with a total of 620 for 4.
|Opposition||Venue, Season||First-innings lead|
|Australia||Cape Town, 2008-09||442|
Kagiso Rabada took the sixth five-for of his Test career, which came in just 13.5 overs - a wicket every 17 deliveries on an average. Rabada's striking ability in Tests at home is remarkable: he has taken 56 wickets in Tests in South Africa at a strike rate of 29.30. Among bowlers with at least 50 wickets in South Africa, his strike rate is easily the best. In fact, no other bowler to take a minimum of ten wickets by his tenth Test in South Africa has struck at a better rate than Rabada. Vernon Philander, who is the next-best, had taken 62 wickets at a strike rate of 33.79 after ten Tests at home.
The only silver lining in the rather dark cloud for Bangladesh was Liton Das' gritty innings of 70. This is the highest percentage contribution to team total by a Bangladesh batsman in a Test innings when the team has been bowled out. The previous highest was Tamim Iqbal's 38.7% contribution against New Zealand in Dunedin in 2007-08.
|Liton Das||SA||Blomfontein, '17-18||70||147||47.61|
|Tamim Iqbal||NZ||Dunedin, '07-08||53||137||38.69|
|Aminul Islam||IND||Dhaka, '00-01||145||400||36.25|
|Hannan Sarkar||SL||PSS, '02||55||161||34.15|
|Tapash Baisya||SL||SSC, '02||52||164||31.71|
Shiva Jayaraman is a senior stats analyst at ESPNcricinfo @shiva_cricinfo