MANCHESTER, England (AP) — England won the toss and chose to bat in the fourth and final test against South Africa at Old Trafford on Friday, and kept an unchanged team as it seeks to seal series victory.
England leads 2-1 in a seesaw series that has swung back and forth dramatically: England won the first test convincingly, South Africa dominated the second test, and England responded with a heavy win in the third game.
While England kept the same lineup from its 239-run win at the Oval, South Africa was forced into two changes because of injuries to seam bowler Vernon Philander and allrounder Chris Morris. Theunis de Bruyn and Duanne Olivier were brought in to replace them.
The absence of Philander robs the Proteas of their best bowler in the series.
England captain Joe Root is eyeing victory in his first series since taking charge, and England have a chance at their first series win at home over South Africa since 1998.
South Africa faces the prospect of ending its tour of England empty-handed having already lost the one-day and Twenty20 series.
England: Joe Root (captain), Alastair Cook, Keaton Jennings, Tom Westley, Dawid Malan, Ben Stokes, Jonny Bairstow, Moeen Ali, Toby Roland-Jones, Stuart Broad, James Anderson.
South Africa: Faf du Plessis (captain), Heino Kuhn, Dean Elgar, Hashim Amla, Quinton de Kock, Temba Bavuma, Theunis de Bruyn, Keshav Maharaj, Kagiso Rabada, Morne Morkel, Duanne Olivier.