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After a hard fought first day, England responded well and had the better of their day 2 battle with the Proteas at Headingley, restricting South Africa to 419 in their first innings. Following up their commendable bowling performance, the England batsmen survived a dark and cloudy evening as they saw off the dangerous South African seamers, putting 48 runs on the board without losing any wicket. It was mainly first day hero Alviro Peterson's effort of 184 runs that saw the tourists go past 400 and Stuard Broad, who went wicketless at The Oval returned with figures of 3/96.
England continued to keep South Africa under the cosh in the first session of the second test at Headingley, but weren't rewarded for their precision bowling effort as South Africa managed to survive the session for the loss of just a solitary wicket.
Resuming from their overnight score of 262-5, progress was slow on Day 2 for the Proteas with Alviro Petersen doing the bulk of the scoring while Jacques Rudolph took his time to play himself in. Petersen continued to score runs with ease through the on-side, while also showing his full repertoire this morning by playing some classic drives. He brought up his 150 in 330 balls and looks good for plenty more.
Rudolph on the other hand perished to some controversial umpiring as he was given out stumped by Tv Umpire Asad Rauf when arguably there was more than enough doubt for the decision to have gone the other way. Kevin Pietersen was the happy benefactor as the South African born player got just his second delivery to hit a piece of loose turf and rip past the left-hander's bat, with Prior whipping the bails off in a flash. Rudolph's foot appeared to be exceptionally close to where the line should be, but had been for all practical purposes wiped out. The line belongs to the Umpire, and Rauf decided that there was nothing behind it, sending Rudolph back to the hutch for 19.
South Africa battled their way to 336-6 at Lunch with Petersen unbeaten on 170, while JP Duminy, coming in at no.8 due to the Proteas' use of a nightwatchman last evening, had 10 to his name.
Petersen and Duminy began the task of propelling the innings further after the interval and looked determined to post a big total on the board. The pair played the deliveries with utmost caution and even though the English seamers especially Anderson and Broad were right on target and found the edge a number of times, they didn't have luck going with them as the South African batsmen managed to get enough bat on them to take the ball to the ropes behind the wicket.
Broad was finally rewarded for his hard work when Petersen was deceived by one that decked away late and could only nick it to Prior. Umpire Rod Tucker refused to give it out but England's review proved to be the savior as Hot Spot confirmed the edge, finally setting Petersen on his way for 182. Duminy then with the help of tailenders accelerated the scoring rate. Vernon Philander fell to Steve Finn after scoring 13 while an over ambitious lofted shot by Morne Morkel off Broad set up his departure for 19. Anderson wrapped up the innings by dismissing the last man Imran Tahir for naught, caught at the second slip as Cook completed his third catch of the innings. Duminy unfortunately remained unbeaten on 48 and the South African innings folded at a competitive 419 as the teams went into the dressing room for the tea break, preparing themselves for the final session of the day.
England's opening pair of Andrew Strauss and Alastair Cook started the innings steadily as Steyn & Co. tried to attack with the new ball. The duo blocked and left most of the moving deliveries while punching the short pitched stuff through the off side and driving the fuller ones. But the excessively overcast conditions towards the evening forced the umpires to stop the play owing to the absence of flood lights at Headingley. England were positioned at 48-0 with 22 overs still left to be bowled when an early end was called to the second day's play.
The visitors can look forward to the third day's morning session as the cloudy and overcast conditions are expected to prevail with light rain predicted. The England openers after battling out a testing final session of the second day will hope to continue to offer stiff resistance to the South African pacers, who can still swing their side into the driver's seat.
England: A Strauss(c), A Cook, J Trott, K Pietersen, I Bell, J Taylor, M Prior(wk), S Broad, T Bresnan, S Finn, J Anderson
South Africa: G Smith(c), A Petersen, H Amla, J Kallis, AB de Villiers(wk), JP Duminy, J Rudoplh, V Philander, M Morkel, D Steyn, I Tahir
South Africa 1st innings 419 all out (139.2 Overs, 3.00 rpo)
A Petersen 182 (365) S Broad 3/96
G Smith 52 (93) J Anderson 2/61
England 1st innings 48/0 (18 Overs, 2.67 rpo)
A Cook 20* (53)
A Strauss 19* (57)
File Photograph Copyright: Barry Zee
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