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28 Dec 2009 12:58
South Africa put on a much improved bowling performance on the third morning of the second Castle Lager Test at Kingsmead, restricting England to the addition of 87 runs for the loss of two wickets in an extended session.
England had 190 for three at the break, still trailing by 163 runs.
South African-born Jonathan Trott, who has been the subject of some discussion about his habit of taking a long time to get ready to face the bowler, added just one run to his overnight score of 17 when he edged a Morne Morkel delivery straight to wicketkeeper Mark Boucher in the first full over of the morning.
Another South African-born player, Kevin Pietersen, joined Alistair Cook, receiving more cheers than jeers as he made his way out to the middle for his first innings at his old home ground.
He and Cook shared an unbeaten fourth wicket stand of 52, during which Cook, who made 15 and 12 in the first Test at Supersport Park last week, battled his way to his 21st Test half century, which took him 136 balls.
Jacques Kallis, normally the safest pair of hands in the slips, dropped Pietersen on 20, when the ball went between his fingers and through his legs, but the mistake was not too costly as Pietersen was out soon after for 31, trying to slog-sweep Paul Harris, only to miss and have the ball thud into his pads.
He considered a review, but wisely decided against it.
South Africa appealed for a catch by Hashim Amla off Cook in JP Duminy’s first over and Cook was given out.
Makhaya Ntini, in particular, bowled much better on Monday morning, whereas his first three overs had gone for 25, his next six went for only eight runs.
However, although South Africa will be reasonably happy with the morning’s performance, they will want more quick wickets on a hot, sunny day at Kingsmead, where the pitch appears to be flattening out with every over. - Sapa
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