‘Lucky’ Proteas frustrate EnglandComment on this story
Leeds – England endured a frustrating morning after sending South Africa in to bat on the first day of the second Test at Headingley on Thursday.
The Proteas were 84 for no wicket at lunch. Alviro Petersen was on 59 not out while captain Graeme Smith, returning to the squad after attending the birth of his daughter, was unbeaten on 24.
But both batsmen had escapes against England's all-seam attack.
Petersen was dropped at second slip off James Anderson when he was on 29, with Alastair Cook – in the slips in the absence of dropped off-spinner Graeme Swann – put down a straightforward chance just below waist height.
Three balls earlier, Petersen edged Anderson at catchable height between third slip and gully for four.
In the next over, fast bowler Steven Finn, who replaced Swann, was denied a wicket when Smith, on six, edged him to his England counterpart Andrew Strauss at first slip.
But umpire Steve Davis had called “dead ball” because Finn broke the stumps at the bowler's end with his right knee.
It was the fourth time Finn's knee made contact with the stumps but the first time the umpire intervened.
There were two further “dead ball” calls during Finn's spell, one of which Smith hit to the boundary, only to be denied what would have been his first four.
Petersen dominated the strike during the early part of the day, reaching his 50 off 78 balls, with seven boundaries, including two successive pulls for four off Tim Bresnan to bring up his half-century.
By lunch he had faced 106 balls compared to 56 bowled at Smith.
Although there was a fair covering of grass on the pitch, there was no undue assistance for the bowlers on a partly cloudy day in Leeds with patches of sunshine.
South Africa won the first Test by an innings and 12 runs. – AFP