World cricketer of the yr Ben Stokes survived three critiques by South Africa as he and Ollie Pope regained the initiative for England on the primary day of the third Test at St George’s Park on Thursday. England have been 224 for 4 on the finish of an attritional day throughout which South Africa had briefly claimed the advantage.
England have been 148 for 4 when Stokes and Pope got here collectively, in hazard of failing to capitalise on batting first on a placid pitch on a scorching, sunny day.
But the pair added 76 with out being parted and have been in a position to carry a sluggish scoring price after England have been in a position to rating solely 117 for two in 58 overs earlier than tea. Stokes was unbeaten on 38 on the shut whereas Pope made 39 not out.
Stokes got here into the match a day after being named participant of the yr by the International Cricket Council and on the again of a person-of-the-match efficiency when England levelled the 4-match collection by successful the second Test in Cape Town by 189 runs.
Stokes made a shaky begin, surviving a leg earlier than wicket assessment on umpire’s name towards left-arm spinner Keshav Maharaj and an attraction for a catch at slip off what South Africa thought was an inside edge off the pad.
South Africa wasted their final assessment when Stokes performed no shot towards Vernon Philander with the second new ball however the ball was nicely exterior the off stump.
Kagiso Rabada took two wickets for South Africa however the house group’s most spectacular bowler was Maharaj who took one for 55 in 32 overs. He bowled an unbroken spell of 30 overs which enabled captain Faf du Plessis to rotate his quick bowlers as England struggled to claim themselves.
– Openers fall into leg-aspect lure –
Zak Crawley and Dom Sibley gave England a stable begin, placing on 70 for the primary wicket however each fell to catches at backward sq. leg.
Joe Denly was leg earlier than to Maharaj when South Africa efficiently sought a assessment which confirmed a ball headed for the stumps had hit pad earlier than bat, whereas Root was overwhelmed and bowled by a quick supply from Rabada which hit the highest of his off stump.
With the 4-match collection tied at 1-1, batting first gave the impression to be a substantial advantage on a pitch which had a good masking of grass however which supplied no assist to the bowlers.
It was the sixth successive Test toss misplaced by Du Plessis.
South Africa picked new cap Dane Paterson as a specialist quick bowler in place of all-rounder Dwaine Pretorius. Paterson surprisingly shared the brand new ball with Philander, with the faster Rabada and Anrich Nortje having to attend for their flip.
England introduced again quick bowler Mark Wood in place of the injured James Anderson. Wood has not performed because the World Cup closing in July due to a knee damage however has been engaged on his health because the starting of the tour. Wood has not performed in a purple-ball match since a Test collection in the West Indies final February.