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Last Updated: Monday, 20 December, 2004, 16:28 GMT
Jones glad to set up England bid
Simon Jones
Jones (facing) gets a hug from team-mate Andrew Flintoff
Simon Jones was thrilled to bits after setting England on the path to a Test match win on Tuesday's final day in Port Elizabeth.

"The ball came out well and went in the right areas," said Jones after taking 4-39 to rip the heart out of the South African batting on Monday.

Asked to explain why he tends to save his best for the second innings, Jones said: "It's a weird thing.

"Maybe nerves get to me in the first innings. It takes time to settle."

Andrew Strauss, unbeaten on 94, and Graham Thorpe (31) saw England safely over the finish line on Tuesday morning for a historic Test win - the first time England have won eight in a row.

After temporarily losing his place in the Test side following an injury in the middle of the summer, Jones has grabbed his chance with both hands on Monday.

"The ball came out quickly for me today but I'll do whatever the skipper tells me," he said after being asked whether he minded not being given the new ball.

James Anderson, preferred to Jones for the bulk of the home Test series against West Indies, faces a longer wait in the wings now.

South African skipper Graeme Smith was seen deep in conversation with both umpires shortly after play was ended for the day with England 49 runs from victory and the daylight all but gone.

If you add two wickets onto their score it's tough for them
Graeme Smith
SA captain

Explaining why he felt it was right for play to be taken into the final day, he said: "[The umpires] said to me they didn't feel it was fair for both teams so they just said let's come back tomorrow and finish the game fairly.

"We were struggling [to see the ball] square of the wicket - you don't want a chance going to gully or point, you need the light to be fair."

Smith insisted South Africa still had a chance of victory.

He said: "If you add two [wickets] onto their score it's tough for them to get the last 40 runs."

But he also admitted that his team's inexperienced middle order bastmen had been found wanting. "It's disappointing - you need a lead of over 200 on this pitch, then it's a lot harder for them to chase."

Report: BBC cricket correspondent Jonathan Agnew

Interview: England bowler Simon Jones

Interview: South African all-rounder Shaun Pollock

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