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Cricket | South Africa

Vernon Philander © Getty Images

Philander, Morris revive Proteas

Vernon Philander led a splendid counter-offensive after a post-tea mini-collapse to steer South Africa to 309 for six thanks to an unbeaten 74-run partnership with Chris Morris at the close on Friday on the first day of the second test at Trent Bridge in Nottingham.

Day 1 interactive coverage

It was a case of déjà vu for South Africa, who, as was the case in the first innings at Lord’s, failed to capitalise on sound starts and half-centuries and could not convert two particularly splendid fifties into centuries, like Joe Root did at Lord’s.

That lack of clinical execution was the one major disappointment on a day in which they managed three attractive half-centuries.

Hashim Amla hammered a beautifully crafted 78 off 149 balls with 11 fours and a six. Quinton de Kock managed a composed 68 off 81 balls to put South Africa in control on 179 for two at tea.

But thereafter, a mixture of soft dismissals, a lack of match awareness and good swing bowling by England saw South Africa surrender their advantage as they capitalised to 235 for six.

Philander’s judgment was five-star and he dispatched the shorter deliveries with forensic accuracy as he finished unbeaten on 54, having faced 76 balls and finding the boundary ropes nine times. Morris finished undefeated on 23.

The duo denied England any more breakthroughs and even 10 overs with the new ball did not unnerve the steady Philander and Morris.

Philander and Morris gave South Africa a slender edge despite the overcast conditions and some nip off the wicket aiding England for most of the day.


Stuart Broad, who captured 8-15 at the same venue two years ago, was the pick of the attack with 3-47. Ben Stokes ended on 2-77 in 18 overs.

"The sun came out at the wrong time," Broad told Sky Sports.

"It's a pretty good pitch to bat on, but when there's cloud you feel in the game a little bit."


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Heino Kuhn and Amla steadied the innings after the early loss of Dean Elgar, splendidly caught behind point by Liam Dawson of James Anderson for six.

Kuhn, with 34, added 48 runs for the third wicket with Amla. That was before Kuhn dragged a delivery by Stuart that nipped back late, onto his stumps when he looked well set.

In the early afternoon session, De Kock and Amla gave South Africa the ascendancy by adding 113 off 141 balls to propel the visitors to 179 for two.

De Kock played an instinctive shot at an out-swinger from Broad straight after tea and presented Alistair Cook with a catch (on his second grab) as he departed for 68.

"Faf asked where I would like to bat and I said that I would like to bat at four," wicket-keeper De Kock told reporters after what he said was an "up and down day"

It was mediocre shot-selection after an innings characterised by superb shots square and straight on both sides of the wicket.

"I've always liked to bat high up but the team make-up has never allowed me to."

"With this Test there were a few selection things that came up so I thought there was a gap there they might need me for."

Amla made the same terminal error as De Kock, gifting his wicket to England when his fourth failed attempt at a secure pull shot found Mark Wood on the deep square leg boundary.

Everything Amla did up to that point was five-star. He looked destined for another three-figure score before Broad removed him.

Amla would feel aggrieved that he did not capitalise on his excellent half-century.

Faf du Plessis was the victim of a soft dismissal as he was excellently caught down leg by Jonny Bairstow off Stokes for 19.

Temba Bavuma played one delightful square drive before he failed to shoulder arms early enough and could not get his bat out of the way early enough, gifting Stokes another scalp when on 20.

Anderson swung the ball, Broad nipped it alarmingly back into the right-handed batsmen, while Mark Wood bowled with intensity and Stokes found a hint of reverse swing.

ENGLAND: Alastair Cook, Keaton Jennings, Gary Ballance, Joe Root (capt), Jonny Bairstow (wk), Ben Stokes, Moeen Ali, Liam Dawson, Stuart Broad, Mark Wood, James Anderson

SOUTH AFRICA: Dean Elgar, Heino Kuhn, Hashim Amla, Faf du Plessis (capt), Temba Bavuma, Quinton de Kock (wk), Vernon Philander, Chris Morris, Keshav Maharaj, Morne Morkel, Duanne Olivier


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