England and South Africa both did their best to get a positive result on the final day at Headingley before the second Test eventually ended in a draw.
The combination of rain and a century opening stand between Graeme Smith and Jacques Rudolph seemed to sending the match to a rather dull conclusion, only for Stuart Broad to breathe life into the contest.
The seamer claimed four wickets for 12 runs as the Proteas slipped from 120 without loss to 258-9 by the time skipper Smith opted to declare, leaving the hosts needing an unlikely 253 from 39 overs.
England did flirt with having a dart at such a difficult chase, including sending out Kevin Pietersen as an opener, before eventually shutting up shop at 130-4.
The brains trust in the home dressing room were left to reflect on their inability to enduce a South African batting collapse much earlier in the day, though their cause wasn't helped when an hour was lost to bad weather in an extended morning session.
In the play that was possible the Proteas' makeshift opening pair stood firm against the home team's four-pronged pace attack, and eventually it was a spinner who made the breakthrough, the part-time off-breaks of Pietersen accounting for Rudolph (69) for the second time in the game.
The same bowler also dismissed Smith for 52, caught at short-leg. DRS upheld umpire Steve Davis' decision - without necessarily demonstrating impact between bat and ball - leaving the left-hander somewhat unfortunate to be sent on his way.
Hashim Amla and AB de Villiers put together a half-century stand before the former slapped a full toss from Pietersen, whose figures of 3-52 suggested England could have done with the presence of Graeme Swann afterall, to Alastair Cook at cover.
From then on Broad took control of proceedings, seeing off De Villiers (44) and JP Duminy in successive deliveries thanks to lbw decisions.
Vernon Philander was soon sent back for single figures in similar fashion while Jacques Kallis, defying the pain of a back spasm, couldn't bend low enough to avoid an excellent short ball, gloving it to wicketkeeper Matt Prior.
Anderson accounted for Dale Steyn and when Broad completed his five-wicket haul by getting Morne Morkel caught in the deep by Cook, Smith decided enough was enough with only Imran Tahir left to come.
He may have briefly have wondered if that was the correct decision, however, when Pietersen strided out to the middle and proceeded to find the fence three times in Morkel's first over.
His departure to Philander soon after was a blow, though, and it seemed if England had given up the ghost when the usual first-wicket combination of Cook (44) and Andrew Strauss (27) were back together again in the middle.
The appearance of Prior at No.5 did threaten another late bid for glory, but his careless run out for seven left South Africa as the ones sensing victory.
The Warwickshire pairing of Jonathan Trott and Ian Bell made sure there was to be no late drama in the fading light at Leeds, leaving Smith to call an end to proceedings at 7.30pm with six overs still remaining.
The outcome means England now head to Lord's for the series finale knowing they must win to prevent their opponents from taking over as the world's No.1 Test team.