England collapse as Faf du Plessis pulls strings for South Africa

• Second Test, day 2: South Africa 339 & 75-1; England 205
• Joe Root scores 78 before innings falls apart

This Test is racing along like a runaway train and Faf du Plessis is in the driving seat. The South Africa captain, a tough, phlegmatic man, had to endure his team losing their last four wickets inside the first 40 minutes and then witness England’s batsmen jauntily head for lunch on 85 for two, despite the loss of both openers with only three runs on the board. Yet by the end of another extraordinary, entertaining day of Test cricket Du Plessis’ side led by 205 runs with nine wickets in hand. After two days South Africa hold all the best cards.

Du Plessis handled his attack deftly during England’s remarkably brief innings. At one point Joe Root was batting so sublimely that South Africa’s total of 335 seemed inadequate but once the England captain departed after striking a majestic 78 from 76 balls the innings imploded with Du Plessis pulling the metaphorical strings as cleverly as Messrs Fluck and Law a couple of decades ago.

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