England vs. South Africa, 3rd Test, Day 1- England maintain tight grip
London: England came up with full force at the Lord’s to save their World no.1 pride but South Africa managed to slip away from danger in the end. South Africa, already 1-0 up in the series, won the toss and chose to bat first but they had no idea what England were up to. Like a smart cat, eager to catch the mouse, England bowlers managed to sneak past Proteas’ solid defense and claimed the wicket of Captain Graeme Smith in the 9th over itself. Steven Finn then came around to pick three prized wickets in the space of just two overs to change the course of the game drastically as South Africa were reduced to 54-4. A 51 runs partnership between AB de Villiers and Jacques Rudolph ended when fast bowler James Anderson dismissed Villiers at the score of 27. South African tail-enders chipped in at the right moment and with the help of Rudolph (42), JP Duminy (61) and Vernon Philander (46*), South Africa ended the day at 262-7 in 87.4 overs. Philander was not out on 46 while Dale Steyn was unbeaten on 21. England’s fortune more or less rests on their batting capability and on how they will manage it without one of their best batsman, Kevin Pieterson.
Kevin Pieterson, who made a fighting century in the 2nd test and to save England, was dropped from the side after he sent text messages to South African players. England lost the first test at The Oval by an Innings and 12 runs despite making 385 in the first innings. The second test at The Leeds was drawn and England will lose their no.1 Test ranking if they lose this test series to South Africa.
MATCH SUMMARY Stumps, Day 1
SOUTH AFRICA 87.4 OVERS 262-7
J Duminy 61 (158) J Anderson 3-58
V Philander 46*(64) S Finn 3-68
J Rudolph 42 (103) G Swann 1-53