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Finn strikes as England push for win

Steven Finn took three crucial wickets, including two in successive overs, as England pushed for victory on the fourth day of the first Test against South Africa at Kingsmead on Tuesday.

Set to make 416 to win, South Africa were 136 for four at the close of play, facing a long struggle to bat out the final day to earn a draw and prevent England from going ahead in the four-match series.

England hopes soared when the tall Finn had South African captain Hashim Amla caught behind for 12 before removing the limpet-like Dean Elgar for 40. Elgar, who carried his bat for 118 not out in the first innings, was caught at second slip by Joe Root. He had been on the field for the entire match up to that point.

AB de Villiers and Faf du Plessis batted through 103 minutes and 23.5 overs to raise hopes that South Africa might pull off another rearguard action to save the game as they have done against Australia, India and Sri Lanka in recent seasons.

But, in what proved to be the last over of the day, Finn struck again, having Du Plessis caught by England captain Alastair Cook at first slip off a ball that kicked viciously to glance off the shoulder of the bat. Finn finished the day with three for 27. Du Plessis nine off 66 balls.

De Villiers, who made 37 not out off 83 balls, escaped with his score on 33 when he went down the pitch to off-spinner Moeen Ali and wicketkeeper Jonny Bairstow failed to catch a sharply-turning ball to make a stumping.
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