London: England's Jonny Bairstow came within five runs of penning his name on the famous Lord's honours board, on day three of the third and final Test against South Africa. But as good as his fighting innings of 95 was, it seems inevitable that there is a match-winner still to evolve in this seesawing Test match.
England are desperate to force the win they need to square the series and retain their status at the top of the world rankings. Conversely, South Africa are seeking to close out a series they have generally shaded throughout and avoid any accusations of the ‘c' word. Of course we are talking about a choke. In this pulsating finale, England will feel the win is there for the taking, while South Africa need all the resolve they can muster to finish what they started at The Oval with a convincing innings-and-12-run victory.
South Africa were 139 runs ahead at stumps, on 145 for three, with seven second innings wickets remaining and two days left in this series to decide the true champion of the Test arena. Hashim Amla was 57 not out. Victory seemed to be slipping through England's fingers until Steven Finn struck a huge blow, trapping Jacques Kallis lbw for 31.