Five-star Swann seals famous victory

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Graeme Swann & England

Man-of-the-match Graeme Swann leads the tourists off at Durban after his 5-54 in a victory by an innings and 98 runs

England required a little over an hour this morning in Durban to polish off South Africa’s tail and go 1-0 up in the four-Test series.

Graeme Swann picked up the first and last of the four wickets the tourists needed today to claim 5-54, the off-spinner’s fourth five-for in his 14 Tests, and take his match tally to nine.

He was named man of the match for the second time in the series, in which he already boasts 14 wickets.

Swann completed victory, by an innings and 98 runs, 70 minutes into the morning session as the Proteas were dismissed for 133 in 50 overs.

They had resumed on 76 for six, something of a recovery from the sixth wicket falling on 50 - thanks to Mark Boucher and Morne Morkel batting out more than 10 overs yesterday evening.

Stuart Broad added one wicket to his overnight haul to finish with 4-43 and James Anderson claimed the other.

The result represents the first time England have beaten South Africa by an innings since 1964.

It sends the tourists to Cape Town, where the third Test begins on January 3, with high hopes of regaining the Basil D’Oliveira Trophy they relinquished at home last year.

It also underlines the value of the last-gasp draw secured at Centurion, where England were one wicket from defeat, and mirrors this summer’s opening two Ashes Tests.

Against Australia, Andrew Strauss’ side clung on for a draw nine down in their second innings at Cardiff and followed up with victory in the at Lord’s.

Graeme Swann

Swann traps Morne Morkel plumb in front on the back foot for 15 to give England their first breakthrough on the final day

Whether England can regain the prize, as they did against their Ashes rivals, in this series remains to be seen as South Africa will surely improve on this abject display?

Requiring 155 to force England to bat again, the Proteas’ best hope of avoiding defeat here was prolonged bad weather today at Kingsmead.

Conditions this morning were overcast but the light was sufficient for play to start on time, half an hour early for the fourth consecutive day due to three early finishes.

Swann continued his happy knack of claiming a wicket in the first over of a spell, as he did yesterday against Ashwell Prince, when he trapped Morkel in front in the second over of the day.

The ball before Strauss had missed a sharp chance to his right off Morkel at slip, where the injured Paul Collingwood would have been.

However, Swann took matters into his own hands as the tall left-hander paid for playing back - departing for 15 from 40 balls.

South Africa reached three figures, which had looked unlikely at one point yesterday evening, when Paul Harris edged Broad between England’s slips and gullies for four.

But Broad struck to remove Boucher, the hosts’ last established batsman, for 29 from 65 deliveries thanks to a successful review which showed the right-hander had gloved a bouncer down leg to wicketkeeper Matt Prior.

Swann could have had his five-for sooner but Strauss opted not to review an lbw shout against Dale Steyn that television replays showed was going on to hit the stumps.

Harris lived dangerously against Broad, who peppered the tall batsman with short balls, but was replaced by Anderson after an hour.

Broad, however, was involved in Harris’ downfall, for 36 from 50 deliveries, taking a simple catch off Anderson at mid-on.

Dale Steyn & England

The moment of victory: Swann has Dale Steyn lbw to seal England's first innings triumph against the Proteas since 1964

That brought Makhaya Ntini to the wicket in what could prove to be his final Test, with the 101-Test veteran's place under threat following a lacklustre bowling display.

Swann finally got Steyn, trapped in front as he could have been before, to round off a famous victory that seemed some way off at lunch yesterday.

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