Proteas continue fight, England hold on

January 6, 2016
Dane Piedt celebrates

A couple of wickets early on in the second session gave the Proteas some hope, but the match now appears to be heading towards a draw, with England on 155-6.

The Proteas sent jitters through the England camp with three wickets in the first hour of the morning session, and it only got worse for England as Dane Piedt accounted for Nick Compton just before lunch.

The mission for England in the second session was to survive and make sure the Proteas couldn’t get a sniff, but that was exactly the opposite of what happened as, for the first time in the match, the hosts had a genuine chance of pulling off the most unlikeliest of victories.

At first, Ben Stokes and James Taylor were looking settled, with Stokes contributing 26 of their 30 runs. But just after hitting Piedt for four, he attempted a slog sweep, got a top edge and found Morkel on the boundary. It was in the next Piedt over that the Proteas really started to draw a sense of belief as he took his third – Taylor popped one up to Bavuma at short leg to perish for 27.

It was a case of now or never for the Proteas as England were simultaneously eating away at the overs and increasing the target. Some dark clouds moved across the stadium and the floodlights came on. With that, a bit of drizzle, probably to the delight of the England dressing room.

Dean Elgar came on to bowl and almost found the breakthrough they were looking for, as Quinton de Kock thought he’d stumped Bairstow, only for a lengthy 3rd umpire review to show that Bairstow had just got his foot back behind the line.

The drizzle dissipated, as did the Proteas’ chances of coming away with a win. A quick burst in the final session might give them an outside chance, but this now has a draw written all over it.



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