England were 12-1 when rain stopped play and brought an end to the first session of the Test against South Africa in Durban.
What a frustrating start to what promised to be a fiercely contesting series. Rain and lightning around Kingsmead resulted in just 6.1 overs being bowled over a period of 30 mins.
South Africa made the early breakthrough when Dale Steyn dismissed Alastair Cook, but all momentum was lost when the umpires ordered the players from the field just three overs later. Eventually, the officials made the decision to take lunch. It is hoped that the field will be fit for play at the scheduled start of the second session (12:40).
Rain delayed the start of this match by 30 minutes. When play began at 10:30, it was hoped that the weather would stay away for the remainder of the day. Unfortunately, the contest lasted just 30 minutes before the rain returned and the players were forced to leave the field.
South Africa have certainly made an early statement in this series. After winning the toss, captain Hashim Amla put England in to bat. Amla said that the Proteas hoped to make use of the overcast conditions at Kingsmead during the first session.
And make use of those conditions they did. Steyn made an impressive return to the side after missing the last three Tests due to a groin injury. South Africa’s premier fast bowler found the edge of Cook’s bat in just the third over, and Dean Elgar took a neat catch at second slip. Steyn continued to bowl quickly and accurately at Test debutant Alex Hales and England’s No 3 Nick Compton before the rain returned in the seventh over.
England 12-1 (1st Innings) – Alex Hales 10 not out, Dale Steyn 1-0
South Africa: Dean Elgar, Stiaan van Zyl, Hashim Amla (c), Faf du Plessis, AB de Villiers (wk), JP Duminy, Temba Bavuma, Dale Steyn, Dane Piedt, Kyle Abbott, Morne Morkel.
England: Alastair Cook (c), Alex Hales, Nick Compton, Joe Root, James Taylor, Ben Stokes, Jonny Bairstow (wk), Moeen Ali, Chris Woakes, Stuart Broad, Steven Finn.