Hashim Amla says the Proteas are in need of lower-order partnerships if the Proteas are to overturn the deficit they currently face against England.
The Proteas ended day two on 214-5 thanks to a 99-run fifth-wicket stand between Theunis de Bruyn (48) and Temba Bavuma (48*). The former Test skipper has called for similar contributions from the remaining batsmen.
‘We are 214-5 and we need to get as close to their score as possible so we need to get a few partnerships under our belts and hopefully we can get close to them,’ Amla said.
Amla feels that while the pitch is difficult to bat on at first, Bavuma and De Bruyn showed that once one has one’s eye in, scoring becomes easier.
‘It’s that type of wicket [that requires patience]. The ground itself allows you to score quickly, once the ball gets through the outfield it tends to get to the boundary, even up the slope the outfield’s quite quick.’
‘The wicket is quite slow, you’ve got to bide your time to get your runs. The way Theunis [de Bruyn] and Temba [Bavuma] batted, they managed to get a partnership going and score freely and that’s what we need more of tomorrow,’ he added.
Amla said that even though the Proteas didn’t bowl England out as quickly as they’d have liked, the England score could have been even more damaging.
‘The end to the England innings was disappointing, but by the same token, with the position they were in, they could’ve gone a lot further, we managed to get those couple of wickets quickly to put them on the back foot.’
‘The lower-order nicked a few through the slips and hit a few top-edges for six so things like that can happen.
‘Stuart Broad managed to score quickly and get some handy runs for them at the bottom end.
‘Ideally, we would have loved to have got them out, but it was their opportunity to take some momentum into their bowling,’ Amla remarked.
The right-hander believes that batting last on the Lord’s surface may prove tricky as the pitch becomes more conducive to spin.
‘It’s turning a little bit now, so if you go by that, as the days go on it’s probably going to turn a bit more.
‘I don’t think the wicket is going to speed up, it might get a little bit slower, but it will still probably turn, so I think it will become more difficult to bat.
‘A few balls kept low yesterday, today probably just as many as yesterday, it’s a little bit up and down so I don’t know if it’s got any worse,’ he concluded.
The Proteas will begin day three 244 runs adrift of England’s first innings score.
Photo: Gareth Copley/Getty Images