Manchester: Moeen Ali's thrilling, unbeaten 67 cemented England's stronghold over South Africa on day three of the final Test at Old Trafford on Sunday.
The home side, leading by 136 on first innings, wobbled to 153-7 before Moeen took them to 224-8 when rain forced an early close.
Under-fire opener Keaton Jennings managed only 18.
South Africa were earlier bowled out for 226 and will begin day four 360 runs behind.
The Proteas already need to break the record for the highest successful Test run-chase on this ground, with the pitch showing further signs of turn and uneven bounce.
England, 2-1 up, are chasing their first home series win against South Africa since 1998.
England - 362 (Bairstow 99, Stokes 58, Root 52) and 224/8 (Moeen Ali 67*, Olivier 3-38)
South Africa - 226 (Bavuma 46, Anderson 4-38)
Status - England lead by 360 runs